Abstract 3938: Gender Differences in the Relationship Between Family History of Myocardial Infarction and Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors and Awareness in Young Subjects: the Dallas Heart Study
Background: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) awareness is poor in young women. While a family history of MI (FHMI) is a useful marker of CVD risk in young subjects, its relationship to CVD awareness and risk factors in women vs. men has not been studied.
Methods: We analyzed data from 2404 subjects age 30–50 in the Dallas Heart Study, a probability-based population study. FHMI was defined as a 1st degree relative with MI at age <50 (men) or <55 (women). Coronary artery calcification (CAC) was measured by CT scan, and perceived lifetime risk of MI was assessed by questionnaire: 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest). Analyses were sex-stratified and interaction tests were adjusted for age and race.
Results: Young women with vs without FHMI had an increased prevalence of multiple (≥ 2) CVD risk factors (49.1% v. 39.1%, p<0.001); an association not seen in men (p=0.9). FHMI was associated with a greater prevalence of CAC in both sexes. (Figure 1⇓) Young men with vs without FHMI were less often sedentary (20.7% v. 38.2%, p=0.001); no differences were seen in women (p-interaction=0.02). Young women with vs without FHMI more commonly used tobacco (40.0% v. 25.2%, p<0.001); no differences were noted in men (p-interaction=0.04). The perception of lifetime risk of MI increased to a greater degree in young men with vs without FHMI (3.4 vs. 2.5) than in women (3.1 vs. 2.6) (p<0.001 each; p-interaction=0.04).
Conclusions: Despite more CV risk factors in women and prevalent atherosclerosis in both sexes with a FHMI, young men with FHMI have healthier behaviors and a greater incremental increase in CV disease awareness than young women. More aggressive CVD education efforts should be aimed towards young women with a FHMI.