Characteristics of heart failure associated with the Great East Japan Earthquake

Akihiro Nakamura, Hiroyuki Satake, Akiyo Abe, Yuta Kagaya, Katuya Kohzu, Kenjiro Sato, Sohta Nakajima, Shigefumi Fukui, Hideaki Endo, Tohru Takahashi, Eiji Nozaki, Kenji Tamaki

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Abstract

Background: On March 11, 2011, the Tohoku district was struck by the most powerful known earthquake to hit Japan. Although stress-induced heart diseases rise after strong psychosocial stress, little is known about the characteristics of heart failure (HF) caused by psychosocial stress related to earthquakes. Methods: We examined patients admitted to our hospital for HF during a three-week period between March 11 and March 31, 2011 (Disaster group) and compared them to patients during the corresponding period of 2010 (Non-Disaster group). Results: The number of patients was larger in the Disaster group (n= 30, 18 men, 12 women; mean age 77.3 ± 9.8 years) than in the Non-Disaster group (n= 16, 8 men, 8 women; mean age 77.3 ± 11.6 years). A total of 14 of 30 patients (46.7%) in the Disaster group did not have past history of admission for HF, compared to 2 patients (12.5%) in the Non-Disaster group (p= 0.02). The number of patients with hypertension was larger in the Disaster group than in the Non-Disaster group (53.3% vs. 37.5%, p= 0.04). The number of patients with atrial fibrillation was also larger in the Disaster group than in the Non-Disaster group (56.7% vs. 25.0%, p= 0.03). Left ventricular systolic ejection fraction (EF) did not differ between the Disaster and Non-Disaster groups (45.2 ± 17.8% vs. 45.6 ± 14.0%, p= 0.46), however, the proportion of patients whose EF was more than 45% were significantly higher in the Disaster group more than in the Non-Disaster group (56.7% vs. 43.8%, p= 0.04). The in-hospital mortality rate for patients in the Disaster group was higher than in the Non-Disaster group (20.0% vs. 6.3%, p= 0.04). Conclusion: The incidence and in-hospital mortality rate of HF increased after the Great East Japan Earthquake, suggesting that psychosocial stress brought on by such a disaster could lead to the development of HF with preserved EF more than that with reduced EF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-30
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of cardiology
Volume62
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jul 1
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Earthquake
  • Heart failure
  • Japan
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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    Nakamura, A., Satake, H., Abe, A., Kagaya, Y., Kohzu, K., Sato, K., Nakajima, S., Fukui, S., Endo, H., Takahashi, T., Nozaki, E., & Tamaki, K. (2013). Characteristics of heart failure associated with the Great East Japan Earthquake. Journal of cardiology, 62(1), 25-30. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jjcc.2013.02.015