Abstract MP48: Social Network, Social Support, and the Risk of Incident Stroke: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study
Background and Purpose: Having a small social network and lack of social support have been associated with incident coronary heart disease, but little is known about their association with incident stroke. Thus, we assessed the association of a small social network and lack of social support with risk of incident stroke and evaluated whether the relation was mediated by vital exhaustion and inflammation.
Methods: The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study measured social network and social support in 13,686 men and women (mean, 57 ± 5.7 years, 56% female, 24% black; 76% white) initially free of stroke. The 10-item Lubben Social Network Scale and 16-item Interpersonal Support Evaluation List-Short Form were used to assess social network size and social support, respectively.
Results: Over a median follow-up of 18.6-years, 905 incident strokes occurred. Relative to participants with a large social network, those with a small social network had a higher risk of stroke [HR (95% CI): 1.43 (1.03-2.00)] after adjustment for demographic and socioeconomic characteristics and marital status (Table). Further adjustment for other potential confounders attenuated the association slightly. Vital exhaustion, but not inflammation, partly mediated the association between a small social network and stroke. Social support was unrelated to incident stroke.
Conclusions: In this sample of US community-dwelling men and women, having a small social network was associated with excess risk of incident stroke. As with other cardiovascular conditions, having a small social network appears to be associated with modestly increased risk of incident stroke.
Author Disclosures: M. Nagayoshi: None. S.A. Everson-Rose: None. H. Iso: None. T.H. Mosley: None. K.M. Rose: None. P.L. Lutsey: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.