The calcium level in the blood indicates the risk of death after a heart attack • DGP

Original Titel:
Serum calcium levels independently predict in-hospital mortality in patients with acute myocardial infarction

MedWiss – Calcium is an essential mineral that also plays a role in cardiovascular diseases. Researchers found that both low and high levels of calcium in the blood increased the risk of heart attack patients dying in the hospital.


Calcium is an important mineral that is responsible for many vital functions. Among other things, it plays a major role in the transmission of information to nerve cells, as well as blood clotting and bone structure. However, too much calcium in the blood can also be harmful. A high calcium level in the blood is a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as coronary artery disease (CHD) and heart attack. But can this value also give an indication of the prognosis after a heart attack? Is there a connection between the calcium concentration in the blood and the risk of dying in hospital after a heart attack?

The researchers examined the calcium levels in the blood of heart attack patients

Scientists from Israel devoted themselves to this topic. They analyzed data from 11,446 patients (average 67.1 years old; 68% men) who were hospitalized for a heart attack between 2002 and 2012. The calcium concentration in the blood was determined in each patient. Depending on the calcium level, the patients were divided into seven different groups: Group 1: below 8.9 mg / dl, group 2: between 8.9 mg / dl and 9.12 mg / dl, group 3: between 9.12 mg / dl and 9.3 mg / dl, group 4: between 9.3 mg / dl and 9.44 mg / dl, group 5: between 9.44 mg / dl and 9.62 mg / dl, group 6: between 9.62 mg / dl and 9.86 mg / dl and group 7: at least 9.86 mg / dl. The researchers looked at how often in which group there were hospital deaths.

Both low and high calcium concentrations increased the risk of death

Several measurements were carried out on the patients, so that an average of 4.2 measurements were available per patient. The average calcium concentration of all patients was 9.4 mg / dl. A total of 794 patients (6.9%) died in hospital. The scientists found that calcium levels were actually related to the risk of death in the hospital. The connection here was U-shaped. This means that both very low and very high values ​​increased the risk of death, while patients with values ​​in the middle range had the lowest risk. Statistical analyzes showed that patients with a calcium concentration of less than 9.12 mg / dl and patients with a calcium level of 9.86 mg / dl or higher had a significantly increased risk of dying in hospital (compared to the middle group with calcium values ​​between 9.3 mg / dl and 9.44 mg / dl).

The calcium concentration in the blood of heart attack patients could thus provide an indication of the risk of dying in hospital. Both very low and very high values ​​indicated an increased risk of death. An individual risk assessment is helpful in order to be able to offer the patient the best possible care. Patients at increased risk should therefore be monitored particularly carefully.

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