Background: Since Mexican Americans have adverse patterns of risk factors for myocardial infarction relative to non-Hispanic whites, the incidence of myocardial infarction should be greater among Mexican Americans than among non-Hispanic whites. This expectation conflicts with reports generated from death certificate registries. Methods and Results: Data regarding myocardial infarction attacks and incident events were collected for a 4-year period in the Corpus Christi Heart Project, a population-based surveillance project for hospitalized coronary heart disease events. For both women and men, Mexican Americans experienced greater hospitalization rates for both attacks and incident events than non-Hispanic whites. Age-adjusted attack rate ratios comparing Mexican Americans with non-Hispanic whites were 1.59 (95% CI, 1.05 to 2.41) and 1.31 (95% CI, 1.18 to 1.45) among women and men, respectively. Corresponding incidence ratios were 1.52 (95% CI, 1.28 to 1.80) and 1.25 (95% CI, 1.10 to 1.42). Conclusions: This is the first report documenting greater incidence of hospitalized myocardial infarction among Mexican Americans than among non-Hispanic whites, a biologically plausible finding given the risk factor patterns observed in the Mexican-American population. Public health planners and clinicians should be aware of the importance of myocardial infarction as a health problem in the Mexican- American population. Culturally appropriate prevention strategies should be developed for and tested in Mexican-American populations.
- myocardial infarction
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)