Alcohol Abstinence and the Risk of Atrial Fibrillation in Patients With Newly Diagnosed Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Nationwide Population-Based Study
Research Design and Methods: A total of 1,112,682 patients newly diagnosed with T2DM between 2011–2014, were identified from the Korean National Health Insurance Service database. After excluding a previous history of AF, 175,100 subjects were included. The primary outcome was new-onset AF.
Results: During a mean follow-up of 4.0 years, AF occurred in 4,174 patients. Heavy alcohol consumption (alcohol intake ≥40 g/day) before a T2DM diagnosis had a higher risk of AF (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] 1.22, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.06–1.41) compared to no alcohol consumption. After a T2DM diagnosis, moderate-to-heavy alcohol consumption (alcohol intake ≥20 g/day) who abstained from alcohol had a lower risk of AF (aHR 0.81, 95% CI 0.68–0.97) than did constant drinkers. Alcohol abstinence showed consistent trends toward lower incident AF in all subgroups and was statistically significant in men (aHR 0.80, 95% CI 0.67–0.96), those aged >65 years (aHR 0.69, 95% CI 0.52–0.91), those with CHA2DS2-VASc score <3 points (aHR 0.71, 95% CI 0.59–0.86), non-insulin users (aHR 0.77, 95% CI 0.63–0.94), and body mass index < 25 mg/k2 (aHR 0.68, 95% CI 0.53–0.88).
Conclusions: In patients with newly diagnosed T2DM, alcohol abstinence was associated with a low risk of AF development. Lifestyle modifications, such as alcohol abstinence, in patients newly diagnosed with T2DM should be recommended to reduce the risk of AF.