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Resting heart rate as a low tech predictor of coronary events in women: prospective cohort study

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To evaluate resting heart rate as an independent predictor of cardiovascular risk in women.


Prospective cohort study.


The Women's Health Initiative was undertaken at 40 research clinics in the United States.


129 135 postmenopausal women.

Main outcome measure

Clinical cardiovascular events.


During a mean of 7.8 (SD 1.6) years of follow up, 2281 women were identified with myocardial infarction or coronary death and 1877 with stroke. We evaluated associations between resting heart rate and cardiovascular events in Cox regression models adjusted for multiple covariates. Higher resting heart rate was independently associated with coronary events (hazard ratio 1.26, 95% confidence interval 1.11 to 1.42 for highest [>76 beats per minute] v lowest quintile [ConclusionResting heart rate, a low tech and inexpensive measure of autonomic tone, independently predicts myocardial infarction or coronary death, but not stroke, in women.

Trial registration NCT00000611.

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