More than 200 million people around the world suffer from PAD, yet little is known about specific risk factors associated with the disease. PAD can lead to heart disease or stroke, making it especially important to learn as much as possible about its impact on patients.
To try and learn more about PAD, the study’s authors explored data from more than 139,000 patients from Finland, Sweden, Denmark and the UK. All patients were between the ages of 39 and 49 years old and participated in one of 11 studies from 1985 to 2008. Patients had no prior history of PAD when the study they participated in began.
Overall, after an average follow-up period of 12.8 years, 667 participants were hospitalized for PAD. Individuals who reported work-related stress were 1.4 times more likely to have PAD than those who did not reported work-related stress.
“Our findings suggest that work-related stress may be a risk factor for PAD in a similar way as it is for heart disease and stroke,” lead author Katriina Heikkilä, PhD, a senior researcher at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, said in a prepared statement.