Abstract P116: Trait Anger Increases Short-term and Long-term Risk for Recurrent CHD: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study
Though several large epidemiologic studies have demonstrated the positive association of anger with coronary heart disease (CHD) onset, a dearth of population-based evidence exists regarding the relationship of anger to the clinical course of CHD among people with established disease. Trait anger is conceptualized as a stable personality trait and defined as the tendency to experience frequent and intense anger. Therefore, it is plausible that the effects of trait anger on CHD are long standing. We assessed the hypothesis that trait anger predicts short-term and long-term risk for recurrent CHD among middle-aged men and women. Participants were 611 black or white men and women, ages 48 - 67, who had a history of CHD at the second clinical examination (1990-1992) of the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study. They were followed for the recurrence of CHD (myocardial infarction or fatal CHD) from 1990 through three different time intervals: 1995, 2003, and 2009 (maximum follow-up = 19.0 years). Trait anger (measured at Visit 2) was assessed using the Spielberger Trait Anger Scale, with scores categorized as high, moderate, and low. Cox proportional hazards regression analyses were adjusted for age, sex, race-center, educational level, waist-to-hip ratio, plasma LDL-and HDL-cholesterol levels, hypertension, diabetes, cigarette smoking status, and pack-years of cigarette smoking. After 3 - 5 years of follow-up, the risk for recurrent CHD among participants with high trait anger was more than twice that of their counterparts with low trait anger (2.24 [95% C.I: 1.14 to 4.40]). After 11 - 13 years, the risk was 80% greater (1.80 [95% C.I: 1.17 to 2.78]) and after 17 - 19 years, it was 70% greater (1.70 [95% C.I: 1.15 to 2.52]). The risk for recurrent CHD was strongest in the first time interval but remained strong and statistically significant through 19 years of follow-up. In conclusion, the experience of frequent and intense anger increases short-term and long-term risk for recurrent CHD in middle-aged men and women.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.