Background: Prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) increases with age, but its association with all-cause mortality in older persons remains uncertain. This study investigated the association of all-cause mortality with MetS and its individual components in older men and women.
Methods: A total of 917 men and 1043 women aged 65 years and older from two Italian population-based cohorts were included in the study. MetS was defined according to four different definitions: National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP), NCEP revised according to the American Heart Association and National Heart Lung Blood Institute (NCEP-R), International Diabetes Organization (IDF) and Joint Interim Statement (JIS). All of these definitions include abdominal obesity, hyperglycaemia, hypertriglyceridaemia, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and hypertension. Hazard Ratios (HR) and their corresponding 95% confidence interval (95%CI) estimated from multivariable-adjusted Cox regression models were used to investigate the associations of all-cause mortality with baseline MetS status and individual MetS components.
Results: After 6·5 ± 1·8 years of follow-up, there were 179 deaths among women and 193 among men. Mortality risk was increased in women with MetS by any definition, regardless of individual components, but limited to age 70-79 years (NCEP, HR = 2·02, 95%CI, 1·16-3·53; NCEP-R, HR = 2·51, 95%CI, 1·45-4·34; IDF, HR = 2·16, 95%CI, 1·26-3·72; JIS, HR = 2·16, 95%CI, 1·26-3·72). Mortality risk of men was associated with hypertriglyceridaemia below age 70 years (HR = 2·50, 95%CI, 1·19-5·25), but unrelated to MetS status.
Conclusions: Metabolic Syndrome is associated with all-cause mortality in older women but not in men. The association, however, is limited to a narrow age range.
© 2012 The Authors. European Journal of Clinical Investigation © 2012 Stichting European Society for Clinical Investigation Journal Foundation.