INTRODUCTION: The aim of the present study was to quantify the impact of different dietary factors on the mortality from ischaemic heart disease in Denmark. METHODS: Relative risks and knowledge on the distribution of different dietary factors were used to estimate etiological fractions. RESULTS: It is estimated that an intake of fruit and vegetables and saturated fat as recommended would prevent 12 and 22%, respectively, of deaths from ischaemic heart disease in Denmark. An intake of fish among those at high risk for ischaemic heart disease, would lead to a 26% lower mortality, while alcohol intake among abstainers would have no significant quantitative effect. DISCUSSION: These results suggest that changes in dietary habits according to current recommendations would have an impact on public health in Denmark.
Fixed minidose warfarin and aspirin alone and in combination vs adjusted-dose warfarin for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation: Second Copenhagen Atrial Fibrillation, Aspirin, and Anticoagulation Study.
BACKGROUND: Despite the efficacy of warfarin sodium therapy for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation, many physicians hesitate to prescribe it to elderly patients because of the risk for bleeding complications and because of inconvenience for the patients. METHODS: The Second Copenhagen Atrial Fibrillation, Aspirin, and Anticoagulation Study was a randomized, controlled trial examining the following therapies: warfarin sodium, 1.25 mg/d; warfarin sodium, 1.25 mg/d, plus aspirin, 300 mg/d; and aspirin, 300 mg/d. These were compared with adjusted-dose warfarin therapy (international normalized ratio of prothrombin time [INR], 2.0-3.0). Stroke or a systemic thromboembolic event was the primary outcome event. Transient ischemic attack, acute myocardial infarction, and death were secondary events. Data were handled as survival data, and risk factors were identified using the Cox proportional hazards model. The trial was scheduled for 6 years from May 1, 1993, but due to scientific evidence of inefficiency of low-intensity warfarin plus aspirin therapy from another study, our trial was prematurely terminated on October 2, 1996. RESULTS: We included 677 patients (median age, 74 years). The cumulative primary event rate after 1 year was 5.8% in patients receiving minidose warfarin; 7.2%, warfarin plus aspirin; 3.6%, aspirin; and 2.8%, adjusted-dose warfarin (P = .67). After 3 years, no difference among the groups was seen. Major bleeding events were rare. CONCLUSIONS: Although the difference was insignificant, adjusted-dose warfarin seemed superior to minidose warfarin and to warfarin plus aspirin after 1 year of treatment. The results do not justify a change in the current recommendation of adjusted-dose warfarin (INR, 2.0-3.0) for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation.
From November, 1985, to June, 1988, 1007 outpatients with chronic non-rheumatic atrial fibrillation (AF) entered a randomised trial; 335 received anticoagulation with warfarin openly, and in a double-blind study 336 received aspirin 75 mg once daily and 336 placebo. Each patient was followed up for 2 years or until termination of the trial. The primary endpoint was a thromboembolic complication (stroke, transient cerebral ischaemic attack, or embolic complications to the viscera and extremities). The secondary endpoint was death. The incidence of thromboembolic complications and vascular mortality were significantly lower in the warfarin group than in the aspirin and placebo groups, which did not differ significantly. 5 patients on warfarin had thromboembolic complications compared with 20 patients on aspirin and 21 on placebo. 21 patients on warfarin were withdrawn because of non-fatal bleeding complications compared with 2 on aspirin and none on placebo. Thus, anticoagulation therapy with warfarin can be recommended to prevent thromboembolic complications in patients with chronic non-rheumatic AF.
We examined the effect of a training programme to reduce interobserver variation in interpretation of electrocardiography in suspected myocardial infarction. Sixteen doctors with 6-24 months of clinical training in internal medicine read serial electrocardiographic recordings in 107 patients and assessed whether signs indicative of acute myocardial infarction were present. There was disagreement in approximately 70% of cases. Eight of the doctors were randomly allocated to attend an eight hour long intensive course on interpretation of electrocardiography in myocardial infarction. The remaining eight participants were allocated to a control group, received no training, and were not told about the subject of the study. All the doctors then reviewed another series of electrocardiographic recordings. No difference was found in the level of agreement within the two groups before and after the training programme, or between the two groups before and after the training. The raters' ability to discriminate between electrocardiograms with a high and low indication of infarction remained unaffected. We conclude that the training programme did not increase agreement regarding the interpretation of electrocardiographic data in suspected myocardial infarction. Our results suggest that the diagnostic approach of physicians is established at a very early stage in their clinical training. The effect of training programmes should be evaluated by the use of randomized clinical studies.
As previously reported, 1007 patients with chronic atrial fibrillation participated in the Copenhagen AFASAK study. Before inclusion to trial, they all had a physical examination, chest roentgenogram, and echocardiogram with determination of left atrial size. This study evaluated the importance of cardiovascular risk factors for development of thromboembolic complications. To exclude any treatment effects on occurrence of thromboembolic complications, we included only the 336 patients from the placebo group. Using Cox's regression model, previous myocardial infarction was a significant risk factor for development of thromboembolic complications. Age, gender, heart failure, chest pain, hypertensive heart disease, diabetes, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, smoking, relative heart volume, and left atrial size were all without statistical importance.