All autoimmune diseases increase heart disease risk

All autoimmune diseases increase heart disease risk

Autoimmune diseases at higher risk of heart disease

a . by individuals autoimmune disease According to a large epidemiological study, people who are affected also have a significantly higher risk of cardiovascular disease to develop.

researchers of ku leuven It has been shown in Belgium that people with autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriasis either systemic sclerosis There is also a significantly higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The results were recently published in the renowned journal “the Lancet” Presented.

Cardiovascular risk from autoimmune diseases

Research results clear for the first time Link between cardiovascular risk and autoimmune diseases, According to the study, the risk of developing heart disease is particularly high among young people with autoimmune diseases.

About one in ten people have an autoimmune disease

In Europe and the United States, approx. every tenth person Diagnosis of an autoimmune disease, for example,

  • rheumatoid arthritis,
  • Psoriasis (psoriasis),
  • systemic sclerosis,
  • lupus erythematosus,
  • Type I diabetes.

Previous studies have suggested a link between autoimmune diseases and cardiovascular disease, but were too small to provide conclusive evidence that could lead to changes in the treatment of autoimmune diseases.

Current research work, presented at the annual congress of european society of cardiology The unveiling in Barcelona could change that.

Clear connection shown

results show a clear relationship between Nineteen of the most common autoimmune diseases and incidence of heart diseases. The risk therefore varies depending on the disease compared to people without autoimmune diseases. 1.4 to 3.6. increased by a factor of,

In addition, the team proved that approximately Autoimmune diseases account for six percent of all heart diseases. Huh. Furthermore, as increased risk counts for the entire spectrum of cardiovascular diseases, the results suggest that autoimmune diseases have a greater impact on cardiovascular health than previously thought.

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The results are based on data from 22 million people

Electronic data sets from the so-called Clinical Practice Research Datalink (CPRD) were analyzed for the study. This database contains 22 million health records of patients in Great Britain.

Analysis of the data shows that people who have been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease have, on average, a 1.56 times increased risk Risk of developing heart disease later in life.

in autoimmune diseases systemic sclerosis, Addison’s disease, a type of tree And type I diabetes The highest risk was determined for the occurrence of heart disease.

need for targeted preventive measures

study lead author Nathalie Conrad It makes clear that research results indicate a clear need for action. “We see an increased risk of heart disease compared to type 2 diabetes”Stressed conrad,

Currently, however, autoimmune diseases are not even considered risk factor in common heart disease guidelines mentioned. Accordingly, there are currently no specific recommendations or preventive measures for patients with autoimmune diseases.

Findings may raise awareness

The working group therefore hopes that the present study will raise awareness among those affected as well as among medical professionals. “We must develop targeted preventive measures for these patients”emphasizes conrad,

She also believes that a better understanding of why this link exists between autoimmune disease and an increased incidence of heart disease is needed. This is the only way to develop measures that can effectively reduce the additional risk.

Why are heart and autoimmune diseases linked?

“The general hypothesis is that chronic and systemic inflammation, which is a common denominator in autoimmune diseases, can trigger all types of heart disease.”Explained conrad,

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“The effects of autoimmune diseases on connective tissue, small vessels and cardiomyocytes, and possibly even some of the commonly used therapies to treat autoimmune diseases, contribute to patients’ cardiovascular risk.”, summarizes the study author. (VB)

Author and source information

This text matches the requirements of medical specialist literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical professionals.


Graduate Editor (FH) Volker Blasecki


  • Nathalie Conrad, Geert Verbeke, Geert Mollenberg, et al.: Autoimmune disease and cardiovascular risk: a population-based study on 19 autoimmune diseases and 12 cardiovascular diseases in 22 million individuals in the UK; In: The Lancet (2022),
  • KU Leuven: Autoimmune disorders increase the risk of heart disease (Published: 08/27/2022), Nieuws.Kuleuwen.Bay

Important Articles:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. He cannot take the place of visiting the doctor.

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