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Author Notes:

Correspondence to: Parveen K. Garg, MD, MPH, 1510 San Pablo St. Suite 322, Los Angeles, CA 90033. E-mail: parveeng@med.usc.edu

Acknowledgments: The authors thank the staff and participants of the ARIC study for their important contributions.

Disclosures: None.

The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute or the National Institutes of Health.


Research Funding:

The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study is carried out as a collaborative study supported by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute contracts (HHSN268201100005C, HHSN268201100006C, HHSN268201100007C, HHSN268201100008C, HHSN268201100009C, HHSN268201100010C, HHSN268201100011C, and HHSN268201100012C).

W.T.O. is supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number F32HL134290.

Additional support was provided by American Heart Association grant 16EIA26410001 (A.A.). L.Y.C. is supported by grant R01 HL126637 from the National Heart, Lung, andBlood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Cardiac & Cardiovascular Systems
  • Cardiovascular System & Cardiology
  • atrial fibrillation
  • prevention
  • risk factors/global assessment
  • risk prediction

American Heart Association's Life Simple 7 and Risk of Atrial Fibrillation in a Population Without Known Cardiovascular Disease: The ARIC (Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities) Study


Journal Title:

Journal of the American Heart Association


Volume 7, Number 8


, Pages e008424-e008424

Type of Work:

Article | Final Publisher PDF


Background-The American Heart Association has defined metrics of ideal cardiovascular health known as Life's Simple 7 (LS7) to prevent cardiovascular disease. We examined the association between LS7 and incident atrial fibrillation (AF) in a biracial cohort of middle- and older-aged adults without known cardiovascular disease. Methods and Results-This analysis included 13 182 ARIC (Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities) study participants (mean baseline age=54±5.7 years; 56% women; 25% black) free of AF and cardiovascular disease. An overall LS7 score was calculated as the sum of the LS7 component scores and classified as inadequate (0-4), average (5-9), or optimal (10-14) cardiovascular health. The primary outcome was incident AF, identified primarily by ECG and hospital discharge coding of AF through December 31, 2014. A total of 2266 (17%) incident AF cases were detected over a median follow-up of 25.1 years. Compared with the inadequate category (n=1057), participants in the average (n=8629) and optimal (n=3496) categories each had a lower risk of developing AF in a multivariable Cox proportional hazards model (hazard ratio 0.59, 95% confidence interval 0.51, 0.67 for average; and hazard ratio 0.38, 95% confidence interval 0.32, 0.44 for optimal). In a similar model, a 1-point-higher LS7 score was associated with a 12% lower risk of incident AF (hazard ratio 0.88, 95% confidence interval 0.86, 0.89). Conclusions-A higher LS7 score is strongly associated with a lower risk of AF in individuals without baseline cardiovascular disease. Determining whether interventions that improve the population's cardiovascular health also reduce AF incidence is needed.

Copyright information:

Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley.

This is an Open Access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/).

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