Prevalence of atrial fibrillation and association with clinical, sociocultural, and ancestral correlates among Hispanic/Latinos: The Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos

Heart Rhythm. 2019 May;16(5):686-693. doi: 10.1016/j.hrthm.2018.11.033.


Background: Hispanics/Latinos represent the largest ethnic minority group in the United States. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia in the United States.

Objective: The purpose of this study was to provide data on the prevalence of AF and its correlates in a representative Hispanic/Latino population-based sample inclusive of all background groups.

Methods: Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos participants (n=16,415; 60% women; 59% age >45 years) were enrolled between March 2008 and June 2011, representing individuals of Cuban, Dominican, Mexican, Puerto Rican, Central American, and South American heritage. AF was defined by the 12-lead electrocardiogram and/or participant self-report of a physician diagnosis. Hispanic background-specific AF prevalence rates were determined. Weighted sequential logistic regression models were adjusted for demographic factors (age and sex) and clinical variables (diabetes, hypertension, body mass index, tobacco use, and estimated glomerular filtration rate).

Results: The overall weighted prevalence of AF was 1.0% (n=162), with the highest prevalence in Hispanics of Dominican and Puerto Rican backgrounds (1.9% and 2.5% respectively) and the lowest in those of Mexican background (0.3%). Diabetes, hypertension, renal disease, left ventricular hypertrophy determined by the electrocardiogram, alcohol use, and English language preference (greater acculturation) (P < .01 for all) were significantly associated with higher AF prevalence. Multivariate analysis by Hispanic/Latino background group showed that Hispanics of Dominican and Puerto Rican backgrounds were at a 3- to 6-fold higher risk of AF than their Mexican counterparts.

Conclusion: In a diverse representative population of Hispanics/Latinos, overall AF prevalence was low and varied significantly across Hispanic/Latino background groups independent of clinical or demographic factors.

Keywords: Atrial fibrillation; Clinical correlates; Epidemiology; Hispanics; Latinos.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Atrial Fibrillation / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Public Health*
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult