Resting heart rate changes and mortality risk


  • Mary Corcoran
  • Univadis Medical News
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A resting heart rate (RHR) of >75 beats per minute (bpm) in mid-life is linked with a doubling in the risk for premature all-cause mortality compared with RHR of ≤55 bpm, according to a new research published in Open Heart

The study included a random population sample of 798 men who were born in 1943 and were living in Gothenburg, Sweden. RHR was measured in 1993 and again in 2003 and 2014 among those who were still alive and willing to take part at these time points (654 and 536 individuals, respectively). 

During the 21-year monitoring period, a total of 119 of the original 798 men died before their 71st birthday. The study found participants with a baseline RHR of more than 75 bpm in 1993 had about a two-fold higher risk for all-cause death, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and coronary heart disease (CHD) compared with those with less than 55 bpm in 1993. 

Every beat increase in heart rate from 1993 was associated with a 3 per cent higher risk for all-cause death, 1 per cent higher risk for CVD and 2 per cent higher risk for CHD. 

The authors suggested that monitoring changes in resting heart rate over time may be important for uncovering future CVD risk.