California: According to a new study conducted in Kaiser Permanente Northern California and published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, patients who followed medical advice after a heart attack were more likely to survive years after their heart attack.
Their prospects improved with every additional recommendation they followed.
The study assessed how many recommendations patients were following at 30 and 90 days after their heart attacks and examined the association between adherence and survival in the years following the heart attack.
Recommendations included taking four cardiovascular medications, not smoking, and achieving blood pressure and cholesterol control. The study followed patients for an average of 2.8 years after their heart attack.
Researchers found high compliance with individual components of post-heart attack medical advice among Kaiser Permanente patients ranging from 67 per cent taking prescribed non-aspirin antiplatelet drugs to 88 per cent taking high cholesterol medications in 30 days.
Patterns were similar at the 90-day mark. About one-third of patients followed at least 5 of 6 recommendations at 30 days and at least 6 of 7 recommendations at 90 days.
Those who followed all of the recommendations had significantly greater long-term survival, and survival increased with each additional guideline followed.
Adherence to one additional guideline recommendation was associated with 8 per cent to 11 per cent lower risk of death, while patients who met all guideline recommendations had 39 per cent to 43 per cent lower mortality compared with those who followed the fewest recommendations.
The study included 25,000 patients who had heart attacks between 2008 and 2014....