Does retirement reduce the risk of myocardial infarction? A prospective registry linkage study of 617 511 Danish workers

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BACKGROUND: Recent studies have suggested that retirement may have beneficial effects on health outcomes. In this study we examined whether the risk of myocardial infarction (MI) was reduced following retirement in a Danish population sample.

METHODS: Participants were 617 511 Danish workers, born between 1932 and 1948, entering the study at the age of 60, without previous known incidents of ischaemic heart disease. Information on retirement and MI were obtained from Danish national registers. A Cox proportional hazard model was used to address the relation between retirement and onset of MI, while adjusting for age, sex, income, occupational position, education, cohabitation and immigrant status. The participants were followed for up to 7 years.

RESULTS: Of the study population, 3% were diagnosed with MI during follow-up. Retirement was associated with a modestly higher risk of MI with a hazard ratio of 1.11 (95% confidence interval: 1.06, 1.16) when comparing retirees with active workers of the same age.

CONCLUSIONS: This study does not support the hypothesis that retirement reduces risk of MI. On the contrary, we find that retirement is associated with a modestly increased risk of MI.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Epidemiology
Volume43
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)160-7
Number of pages8
ISSN0300-5771
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014

ID: 115218503