Document Type

Journal Article


Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science


School of Exercise and Health Sciences/ECU Health and Wellness Institute




This article was originally published as: Gunnell, A. , Einarsdottir, K., Galvao, D. A., Joyce, S., Tomlin, S., Graham, V., Mcintyre, C., Newton, R. U. , & Briffa , T. (2013). Lifestyle factors, medication use and risk for ischaemic heart disease hospitalisation: a longitudinal population-based study. PloS One, 8(10), Article e77833. Original article available here


Background:Lifestyle factors have been implicated in ischaemic heart disease (IHD) development however a limited number of longitudinal studies report results stratified by cardio-protective medication use.Purpose:This study investigated the influence of self-reported lifestyle factors on hospitalisation for IHD, stratified by blood pressure and/or lipid-lowering therapy.Methods:A population-based cohort of 14,890 participants aged 45+ years and IHD-free was identified from the Western Australian Health and wellbeing Surveillance System (2004 to 2010 inclusive), and linked with hospital administrative data. Adjusted hazard ratios for future IHD-hospitalisation were estimated using Cox regression.Results:Current smokers remained at higher risk for IHD-hospitalisation (adjusted HR=1.57; 95% CI: 1.22-2.03) after adjustment for medication use, as did those considered overweight (BMI=25-29 kg/m2; adjusted HR=1.28; 95% CI: 1.04-1.57) or obese (BMI of ≥30kg/m2; adjusted HR=1.31; 95% CI: 1.03-1.66). Weekly leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) of 150 minutes or more and daily intake of 3 or more fruit/vegetable servings reduced risk by 21% (95% CI: 0.64-0.97) and 26% (95% CI: 0.58-0.96) respectively. Benefits of LTPA appeared greatest in those on blood pressure lowering medication (adjusted HR=0.50; 95% CI: 0.31-0.82 [for LTPA=150 mins]). IHD risk in smokers was most pronounced in those taking neither medication (adjusted HR=2.00; 95% CI: 1.41-2.83).Conclusion:This study confirms the contribution of previously reported lifestyle factors towards IHD hospitalisation, even after adjustment for antihypertensive and lipid-lowering medication use. Medication stratified results suggest that IHD risks related to LTPA and smoking may differ according to medication use.