From: Elsevier
Published October 4, 2017 08:30 AM

Higher Risk of Heart Failure in Cold Weather, Study Suggests

Could decreases in temperature cause heart failure and death?

An increase in hospitalization and death in elderly patients with heart failure could be associated with changes in temperature and atmospheric pressure, according to a new study in Environment International. The authors of the study say elderly with heart failure should avoid fog and low cloud in the winter as a preventive measure.

Previous research has shown that changes in the weather can affect the health of vulnerable people - for example, heat waves and cold spells have been shown to increase disease and even lead to death in people from low-income neighborhoods. The new study, led by researchers at Université Laval and Université de Sherbrooke in Quebec, Canada, reveals the impact of changes in temperature and air pressure on heart failure patients.

"We know that doctors rarely take the weather forecast into account when treating or making recommendations to heart failure patients," said Prof. Pierre Gosselin, lead author of the study from Universitié Laval in Canada. "So with the extreme differences in temperature due to climate change, we wanted to show how the weather is becoming a more relevant factor. Our study shows that exposure to cold or high-pressure weather could trigger events leading to hospitalization or death in heart failure patients."

Read more at Elsevier

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