Moderate consumption of alcohol is not harmful for adults with heart failure: study
A study at the University of Washington School of Medicine in St Louis suggests that people over 65 years of age who have recently had heart failure diagnosed may continue to drink moderate amounts of alcohol without worsening its condition.
The researchers analyzed data from a previous study called the Cardiovascular Health Study, conducted between 1989 and 1993. It included 5,888 adults in Medicare. Of these, 393 patients developed heart failure during the nine years of follow-up.
With an average age of 79, a little more than half of patients with heart failure were women and 86 percent were white. Patients were divided into four categories for the analysis: people who never drank, people who drank and stopped in the past, people who had seven or less drinks per week and people who had eight or more drinks per week . The researchers defined a portion of alcohol as a 12-ounce beer, a glass of 6 oz. Glass or a 1.5-ounce liquor.
After controlling the variables, such as age, gender, race, education level, income, smoking status, blood pressure and other factors, the researchers They found an association between consuming seven or less drinks per week and a prolonged survival of little more than one year, compared to long-term abstentionists.
The extended survival reached an average of 383 days and ranged from 17 to 748 days. The biggest benefit seems to be derived from the consumption of 10 drinks per week, but so few patients enter this category that the data were not enough to draw definitive conclusions.
"People who develop heart failure at an elderly age and never drink should not start to drink," said lead author and cardiologist David L. Brown, a professor of medicine at the university.
"But our study suggests that people who have taken one or two drinks daily before their diagnosis of heart failure can continue to do so without worrying that they are causing bad," Brown said, adding that the decision should always be taken in consultation with the doctors.
The study was published on December 28 at JAMA Network Open.