Enjoy the heat this summer. Cold weather brings more than a chill to your bones, a new study suggests. It could also raise your risk of having a heart attack.
The results show that each 1.8 degree Fahrenheit reduction in temperature on a single day is associated with around 200 additional heart attacks.
The results are published online today in the British Medical Journal.
In the light of global climate change, the relations between weather and health are of increasing interest. Previous studies have shown that outdoor temperature is linked to mortality risk in the short term, with both hot and cold days having an effect, but the effect of temperature on the risk of heart attacks (called myocardial infarctions) is unclear.
Researchers from the United Kingdom analyzed data on 84,010 hospital admissions for heart attacks recorded in 2003-2006. They also looked at the daily temperatures from the British Atmospheric Data Center, focusing on 15 geographical areas in England and Wales.