Chronobiology of death in heart failure

Nuria Ribas, Maite Domingo, Paloma Gastelurrutia, Andreu Ferrero-Gregori, Pilar Rull, Mariana Noguero, Carmen Garcia, Teresa Puig, Juan Cinca, Antoni Bayes-Genis

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Introduction and objectives In the general population, heart events occur more often during early morning, on Mondays, and during winter. However, the chronobiology of death in heart failure has not been analyzed. The aim of this study was to determine the circadian, day of the week, and seasonal variability of all-cause mortality in chronic heart failure. Methods This was an analysis of all consecutive heart failure patients followed in a heart failure unit from January 2003 to December 2008. The circadian moment of death was analyzed at 6-h intervals and was determined by reviewing medical records and by information provided by the relatives. Results Of 1196 patients (mean [standard deviation] age, 69 [13] years; 62% male), 418 (34.9%) died during a mean (standard deviation) follow-up of 29 (21) months. Survivors were younger, had higher body mass index, left ventricular ejection fraction, glomerular filtration rate, hemoglobin and sodium levels, and lower Framingham risk scores, amino-terminal pro-B type natriuretic peptide, troponin T, and urate values. They were more frequently treated with angiotensin receptor blockers, beta-blockers, mineralocorticoids receptor antagonists, digoxin, nitrates, hydralazine, statins, loop diuretics, and thiazides. The analysis of the circadian and weekly variability did not reveal significant differences between the four 6-h intervals or the days of the week. Mortality occurred more frequently during the winter (30.6%) compared with the other seasons (P =.024). Conclusions All cause mortality does not follow a circadian pattern, but a seasonal rhythm in patients with heart failure. This finding is in contrast to the circadian rhythmicity of cardiovascular events reported in the general population. © 2013 Sociedad Espanola de Cardiologia. Published by Elsevier Espana, S.L. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-393
JournalRevista Espanola de Cardiologia
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Chronobiology
  • Heart failure
  • Mortality

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