Klára Törő, Eszter Rausz, Éva Keller

Sudden death due to ischemic heart disease among adolescents and young adults before and after the socio-economic changes in 1989 of Hungary

Department of Forensic Medicine Semmelweis University

Background: Ischemic heart disease (IDH) mortality is generally accepted as an indicator of socio-economic conditions. In view of the health status of future generations, sudden cardiac deaths among adolescents and young adults are a considerable focus of attention of public health specialists. In a changing social environment, the rate of sudden deaths in youths could be a sensitive indicator in the evaluation of health effects. Coronary artery anomalies, myocarditis and cardiomyopathies are the most common causes of sudden cardiac deaths in adolescents, and young adults. The aim of this study was to detect the changes in the rate of ischemic heart disease mortality among young people before and after the socio-economic change of 1989 in Hungary. Material and method: Data on ischemic mortality were collected from the years 1979-2000. Death certificates were obtained from the Office for National Statistics. Results: There was a significant reduction in coronary mortality in young male adults in the age group of 20-24 years (OR=1.69, CI=1.23-2.32, p=0.00082), 25-29 years (OR=1.3, CI=1.11-1.53, p=0.00094) and 30-34 years (OR=1.37, CI=1.25-1.51, p=0.0000001) after the socio-economic change of 1989. Among young females, the mortality showed a reduction only in the age group of 20-24 years (OR=1.69, CI=1.18-2.45, p=0.039). Discussion: Mortality rates of ischemic heart disease in adolescents and young adults may reflect the changes of socio-economic conditions. Early detection and treatment of youths at risk of premature IHD offers the greatest promise and an opportunity for gender-specific interventions.

Key words: Ischemic heart disease, social-economic changes, sudden death, youth

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