Light to Moderate Alcohol Consumption Is Associated With Lower Risk of Aortic Valve Sclerosis
The Study of Health in Pomerania (SHIP)
Objective—In developed countries, sclerotic and calcific degeneration of the aortic valve is a common disorder showing pathophysiologic similarities with atherothrombotic coronary disease. Light to moderate alcohol consumption has been associated with a lower risk for atherothrombotic coronary disease and mortality. Whether alcohol consumption affects the development of aortic valve sclerosis (AVS) is not well known. In the present study, we aim to analyze the cross-sectional association between average daily alcohol consumption and AVS in the general population.
Approach and Results—We analyzed cross-sectional data from 2022 men and women, aged 45 to 81 years, from the population-based Study of Health in Pomerania. We used a computer-assisted interview that included beverage-specific questions about quantity and frequency of alcohol over the last 30 days to calculate the average quantity of alcohol consumption (in grams of ethanol per day). AVS was ascertained by echocardiography. The prevalence of AVS was 32.3%. Average daily alcohol intake displayed a J-type relation with AVS (fully adjusted P value: 0.005). Compared with individuals with an average consumption of 10 g of alcohol per day, multivariable-adjusted odds ratios were 1.60 (95% confidence interval, 1.19–2.14) among current abstainers and 1.56 (95% confidence interval, 1.01–2.41) among individuals with an average consumption of 60 g per day.
Conclusions—Our findings indicate that light to moderate alcohol consumption was associated with a lower odd of having AVS. Prospective data need to address whether alcohol consumption and related changes over time in several biological markers affect the progression of AVS.
- Received October 15, 2014.
- Accepted February 22, 2015.
- © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.