Risk of stroke and myocardial infarction after influenza-like illness in New York State

Kulick, Erin R.; Alvord, Trevor; Canning, Michelle; Elkind, Mitchell S. V.; Chang, Bernard P.; Boehme, Amelia K.

Influenza may be associated with increased stroke and myocardial infarction (MI) risk. We hypothesized that risk of stroke and MI after influenza-like illness (ILI) would be higher in patients in New York State. We additionally assessed whether this relationship differed across a series of sociodemographic factors.

A case-crossover analysis of the 2012–2014 New York Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System (SPARCS) was used to estimate odds of ischemic stroke and MI after ILI. Each patient’s case window (the time period preceding event) was compared to their control windows (same dates from the previous 2 years) in conditional logistic regression models used to estimate odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals (OR, 95% CI). We varied the case windows from 15 to 365 days preceding event as compared to control windows constructed using the same dates from the previous 2 years. Analyses were stratified by sex, race, and urban-rural status based on residential zip code.

A total of 33,742 patients were identified as having ischemic stroke and 53,094 had MI. ILI events in the 15 days prior were associated with a 39% increase in odds of ischemic stroke (95% CI 1.09–1.77), increasing to an almost 70% increase in odds when looking at ILI events over the last year (95% CI 1.56, 1.83). In contrast, the effect of ILI hospitalization on MI was strongest in the 15 days prior (OR = 1.24, 95% CI 1.06–1.44). The risk of ischemic stroke after ILI was higher among individuals living in rural areas in the 90 days prior to stroke and among men in the year prior to event. In contrast, the association between ILI and MI varied only across race with whites having significantly higher ILI associated MI.

This study highlights risk period differences for acute cardiovascular events after ILI, indicating possible differences in mechanism behind the risk of stroke after ILI compared to the risk of MI. High risk populations for stroke after ILI include men and people living in rural areas, while whites are at high risk for MI after ILI. Future studies are needed to identify ways to mitigate these risks.

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BMC Public Health

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Published Here
December 20, 2022


Cardiovascular diseases, Influenza, Myocardial infarction, Stroke, Case-crossover, Health disparities