London: New research presented at the British Cardiovascular Society (BCS) conference reveals a higher likelihood of fatal heart attacks at the beginning of the workweek.
The study analyzed data from 10,528 patients admitted to hospitals in Ireland between 2013 and 2018, specifically focusing on the most severe type of heart attack known as ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), where a major coronary artery is completely blocked.
The findings revealed a 13% higher likelihood of heart attacks on Mondays compared to other days of the week. Additionally, there were unexpectedly higher rates of STEMI on Sundays.
While the exact reasons behind this phenomenon, often referred to as “Blue Monday,” remain unclear, previous studies have suggested a link to the body’s circadian rhythm, which regulates sleep and wake cycles.
Dr Jack Laffan, the lead researcher from the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, highlighted the statistical correlation between the start of the working week and the incidence of STEMI but acknowledged that further investigation is required to understand the underlying factors. Prompt emergency assessment and treatment, such as emergency angioplasty, are crucial in minimizing heart damage caused by STEMI.
Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation (BHF), emphasized the importance of unravelling the reasons behind the specific timing of severe heart attacks. By gaining a deeper understanding of this phenomenon, medical professionals can enhance their ability to prevent and treat these life-threatening conditions, ultimately saving more lives in the future.