Big belly, severe obesity have been linked with risk of death in heart attack survivors, says research.
Professor Tabassome Simon said that the impact of obesity on long term mortality and cardiovascular complications in the general population has been the object of recent debate and much emphasis has also been given to the deleterious role of abdominal obesity.
Simon said that at the time of a heart attack, early mortality tends to be lower in obese patients, a phenomenon well known in critical care situations and described as the 'obesity paradox'.
Simon said that as waist circumference is strongly linked to BMI, the researchers determined the upper quartile of waist circumference within each BMI category and used both variables together to determine their respective role in association with long-term mortality.
She added that they found that both lean patients (BMI less than 22 kg/m2) and very obese patients (BMI =35 kg/m2) had an increased risk of death at 5 years: + 41 percent and + 65 percent, respectively. Being in the upper quartile of waist circumference was also an indicator of increased mortality at 5 years (+ 44 percent).