Atrial fibrillation prevalence, incidence and risk of stroke and all-cause death among Chinese

Int J Cardiol. 2010 Mar 4;139(2):173-80. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcard.2008.10.045. Epub 2008 Nov 30.


Background: We investigated atrial fibrillation (AF) prevalence, incidence and the risk of stroke and all-cause death because little is known about AF risk among ethnic Chinese.

Methods: We conducted a community-based prospective cohort study among 3560 participants. Prevalent and incident AF was documented by using the 12-lead ECG in baseline and serial follow-ups, and the stroke and all-cause death events were ascertained.

Results: Overall prevalence rates of AF in the cohort were 1.4% in men and 0.7% in women. Incidence rates of AF were 1.68 per 1000 person-years for men and 0.76 per 1000 person-years for women. During a median 13.8 years' follow-up, we documented 208 cases of stroke and 776 deaths. As compared with those without AF, participants with AF had nearly 4 times the age, gender-adjusted risk of stroke (relative risk [RR], 3.87, 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.12-7.15), and twice the risk of death associated with all causes (RR, 2.23, 95% CI, 1.52-3.27). Further adjustment for body mass index, lifestyle factors, socioeconomic status and clinical diseases slightly attenuated these risks. In addition, after adjusting for echocardiographic measures, the following risks remained significant: the multivariate RRs were 2.90 (95% CI, 1.28-6.59) for risk of stroke and 2.05 (95% CI, 1.27-3.32) for risk of all-cause death among participants with AF.

Conclusion: Our data demonstrate that AF is a significant risk factor for stroke and all-cause death for the Chinese.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asians / statistics & numerical data*
  • Atrial Fibrillation / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Stroke / ethnology*
  • Taiwan / epidemiology