Childhood Asthma May Lead to Increased Left Ventricular Mass in Adulthood

Young adults with a history of asthma are at a greater risk of an increased left ventricular mass index, according to new research published June 26 in JACC: Heart Failure.

Dianjianyi Sun MD, PhD, et al., examined 1,118 patients who answered a questionnaire on their asthma history. During approximately 10 years of follow-up, patients with a history of asthma had a higher adjusted mean left ventricular mass and left ventricular mass index compared with those without asthma. Systolic blood pressure significantly modified the association between asthma and these parameters, which were more prominent in patients with prehypertension and hypertension, this is the first study to find an association between a history of asthma from childhood and left ventricular mass in adulthood. Previous studies have found asthma to be related to other cardiovascular conditions.

In an editorial comment, John S. Gottdiener, MD, FACC, writes that the study leaves several unanswered questions, as no baseline echocardiograms were available.

"All we know is the difference in left ventricular mass between those who did and did not have a diagnosis of asthma years before echocardiography was performed," he said. "We look forward to further studies which will accurately determine the association of asthma with death, heart failure, myocardial infarction and stroke. Of particular value will be learning how severe and long the asthmatic exposure needs to be to pose significant risk. This together with determining potential pathophysiologic mechanisms will help to intelligently design effective prevention interventions validated by randomized controlled trials."

Clinical Topics: Heart Failure and Cardiomyopathies, Noninvasive Imaging, Prevention, Vascular Medicine, Acute Heart Failure, Echocardiography/Ultrasound, Hypertension

Keywords: Asthma, Blood Pressure, Echocardiography, Follow-Up Studies, Heart Failure, Hypertension, Myocardial Infarction, Prehypertension, Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic, Stroke, Questionnaires

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