Association between gait speed as a measure of frailty and risk of cardiovascular events after myocardial infarction

J Am Coll Cardiol. 2013 May 14;61(19):1964-72. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2013.02.020. Epub 2013 Mar 14.


Objectives: This study sought to determine the additional clinical value of gait speed to Framingham risk score (FRS), cardiac function, and comorbid conditions in predicting cardiovascular events in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction.

Background: There is growing evidence that gait speed is inversely associated with all-cause mortality, particularly cardiovascular mortality, among the elderly.

Methods: We undertook a single-center prospective observational study of gait speed in 472 patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction in Japan, between 2001 and 2008. Gait speeds were measured using a 200-m course before discharge in all patients, and we followed up cardiovascular events, which consist of cardiovascular deaths, nonfatal myocardial infarctions, and nonfatal ischemic strokes.

Results: During the 2,596 person-years of follow-up, 83 patients (17.6%) experienced cardiovascular events. Cardiovascular events increased across decreasing tertiles of gait speed (fastest tertile: n = 5, 3.2%; middle tertile: n = 20, 12.6%; slowest tertile, n = 58, 36.7%). By multiple adjusted Cox proportional hazards analysis, gait speed was a significant and independent predictor of cardiovascular events (hazard ratio for increasing 0.1 m/s of gait speed: 0.71, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.63 to 0.81, p < 0.001). The addition of gait speed to the model incorporating FRS, B-type natriuretic peptide levels, and comorbidity index improved reclassification (net reclassification index: 32.8%, 95% CI: 17.4 to 48.3, p < 0.001) and the C-statistics with a reasonable global fit and calibration (C-statistics: from 0.703 [95% CI: 0.636 to 0.763] to 0.786 [95% CI: 0.738 to 0.829]).

Conclusions: Among patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction, slow gait speed was significantly associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular events. (Gait Speed for Predicting Cardiovascular Events After Myocardial Infarction; NCT01484158).

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Frail Elderly / statistics & numerical data*
  • Gait*
  • Humans
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / mortality*
  • Myocardial Infarction / surgery
  • Percutaneous Coronary Intervention
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Walking / statistics & numerical data*

Associated data