COVID-19 Increases The Chance Of Heart Attack And Stroke

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is also known as a heart attack. It occurs due to any

As a result of poor oxygen, the cardiomyocytes (heart cells) start to die and end in a heart attack.

that affects its function. Certain types of stroke can even result in devastating or long-term disability to the patients.

Stroke is basically of two types:

Link between Respiratory Infection and Vascular Events

For several decades there have been existing pieces of evidence on increased risk of myocardial infarction and stroke with relation to respiratory disorders like influenza, pneumonia, acute bronchitis, and others.

Due to this, the study team anticipated a possible association of these conditions with COVID-19 during the first wave of the pandemic in Sweden. Although this relationship was explored, reports were suggesting a 30-40% fall in the number of cases for heart attack and stroke during COVID.

One of the reasons for these reduced cases was the fact that many numbers of people did not seek medical attention for symptoms of acute coronary syndrome or stroke during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Comparative Data

The study team evaluated 86,742 COVID-19 patients for the occurrence of acute myocardial infarction or heart attack and stroke. These individuals were compared with 348,481 control individuals from February 1 to September 14, 2020.

The data were obtained from the national registries of the Public Health Agency of Sweden, Statistics Sweden, and the National Board of Health and Welfare. Two statistical methods were used in the study: the matched cohort study and the self-controlled case series.

Increased Risk of Heart attack and Stroke

“The results indicate that acute cardiovascular complications represent an important clinical manifestation of COVID-19. Our results also show how important it is to vaccinate against COVID-19, in particular the elderly who are at increased risk of acute cardiovascular events,” says Ioannis Katsoularis from Umea University, a co-author of the study.

The study thereby proposes that it is vital to recognize COVID-19 as a hazard for acute myocardial infarction and ischemic stroke. The risk rises even higher with the recurrence of these vascular events in the infected individuals.

The study team also concludes that further studies are required to evaluate these vascular risks among the COVID-19 patients for a better understanding of the possible mechanisms.

Facts on Heart Attack and Stroke

  • Heart diseases are the leading cause of death for most people in the United States.
  • A heart attack strikes almost 805,000 Americans annually.

  • Heart attacks are silent (the person is not aware of it) in every 1 in 5 individuals.

  • Stroke is a leading cause of long-term disability especially among seniors globally.

  • Every 40 seconds someone has a stroke and heart attack and every 4 minutes, someone dies of a stroke in the United States.

  • 1 in every 6 deaths from cardiovascular disease was due to stroke in 2018.

  • Ischemic strokes contribute to about 87% of all strokes.

  • Stroke-related expenses cost nearly $46 billion in the United States between 2014 and 2015.


  1. Subjective Cognitive Decline — A Public Health Issue
  2. What is the association of COVID-19 with heart attacks and strokes?
  3. COVID-19 an Independent Driver for Heart Attack and Stroke
  4. Sex and age differences in the incidence of acute myocardial infarction during the COVID-19 pandemic in a Swedish health-care region without lockdown: a retrospective cohort study
  5. Indirect acute effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on physical and mental health in the UK: a population-based study
  6. Stroke Facts
  7. Heart Disease Facts

Source: Medindia

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