Higher Risk of CVD When Siblings Have it

Middle-aged adults with a sibling suffering from cardiovascular disease (CVD) have a 45-percent increased risk for the disease, according to a study.

Researchers say cardiovascular disease in a first-degree relative confers increased risk for CVD; however, according to the information attained in the study the risk is greater when a sibling has the disease than when a parent has CVD.

Joanne M. Murabito, M.D., Sc.M., of the Framingham Heart Study in Framingham, Mass., and colleagues conducted the study to determine whether one is more likely to develop CVD if his/her sibling has it. They also examined the impact of sibling CVD over and above that of parental CVD.

Researchers analyzed data from the Framingham Offspring Study, a population-based investigation. Participants were members of the offspring cohort aged 30 and older and CVD free who had at least one sibling. Researchers followed them for eight years and found sibling CVD is associated with a 55-percent increased-risk for incident CVD.

Study authors say sibling CVD confers increased risks of CVD events above and beyond traditional risk factors and parental premature CVD. Thus, sibling CVD should be considered as important as parental premature CVD in the assessment of risk.

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