Introduction: The detrimental effects of excessive alcohol consumption on cardiovascular and overall health are well known. However, data on the impact of alcohol in aortic disease are sparse.
Hypothesis:Excessive alcohol consumption may be associated with aortic root dilatation
Methods: In the context of the ongoing Corinthia study 1043 subjects (467 males, aged 30-98 years) were assessed). Among others, standard questionnaires and echocardiography were done. Habitual alcohol consumers (HAC) were considered those consuming every day alcohol and social drinkers (SD) subjects with occasional consumption. Alcohol consumption was evaluated based on standard questionnaire.
Results: Of the total study population 448(43%) were HAC. Between HAC and SD there was no difference in age (65±12y vs. 64±11y, p=0.12) and history of hypertension, while among HAC the male to female ratio was (60% vs. 40%, p<0.001). Importantly, HAC had increased AoRD (33.61±4.13mm vs. 31.83±4.41mm, p<0.001) and increased index AoRD (17.43±2.23mm/m2 vs 16.84±2.32mm/m2, p<0.001) compared to SD. Interestingly, subjects with aortic root aneurysm (AoRD>40mm) were more often HAC (61% vs. 39%, p=0.01). Importantly, there was a stepwise increase in AoRD according to every day’s measures of alcohol consumption (0-1glass: 31.99±3.65mm vs. 1-2glasses: 33.65±3.73mm vs. >3glasses: 34.58±4.44mm, p<0.001) and indexAoRD (0-1glass:16.95±2.18mm/m2 vs. 1-2glasses: 17.45±2.07mmm2 vs. >3glasses:17.39±2.39mm/m2, p<0.04). Even after adjustments for confounders such as age, gender, smoking status, hypertension and body surface area quantity of alcohol consumption was significantly associated with AoRD (B coefficient=0.55, 95%CI:0.09-1.01, p=0.02).
Conclusions: Habitual alcohol consumption is associated with an increase in aortic root diameter.