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Birth weight, components of height and coronary heart disease: evidence from the Whitehall II study

Ferrie, JE; Langenberg, C; Shipley, MJ; Marmot, MG; (2006) Birth weight, components of height and coronary heart disease: evidence from the Whitehall II study. INT J EPIDEMIOL , 35 (6) 1532 - 1542. 10.1093/ije/dyl184.

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Abstract

Background Previous studies have suggested that shorter leg length, not trunk length, may explain the inverse association between height and coronary heart disease (CHD) risk. However, investigation of the importance of birth weight for these associations has been limited. This study examines associations of measures of stature and birth weight with CHD risk factors (measures of blood pressure and lipids, 2 h glucose, waist-hip ratio and fibrinogen) and incident non-fatal coronary events in middle age.Methods Data were derived mostly from the Phase 5 (1997-99) clinical screening of the Whitehall II study of British civil servants. The main cross-sectional analyses included 1084 women and 2290 men with complete data.Results In women total height and leg length were the measures that tended to be most strongly associated with CHD risk factors, while in men leg length demonstrated the closest associations. Although associations between trunk length and CHD risk factors were weaker, trunk length was the component of height that appeared to be most closely associated with coronary events. Associations between birth weight and CHD risk factors and coronary events were generally weaker than for any measure of stature. Adjustment for birth weight had little effect on associations between components of stature and CHD risk factors or events.Conclusion Findings from this relatively privileged cohort confirmed that shorter leg length underlies the inverse association between height and CHD risk factors in middle-aged women and men. Furthermore, in this study population shorter trunk length was more closely associated with incident, non-fatal coronary events.

Type: Article
Title: Birth weight, components of height and coronary heart disease: evidence from the Whitehall II study
DOI: 10.1093/ije/dyl184
Keywords: birth weight, height, leg length, trunk length, CHD, Whitehall II, BRITISH WOMENS HEART, DIASTOLIC BLOOD-PRESSURE, ADULT HEIGHT, LEG LENGTH, FOLLOW-UP, CARDIOVASCULAR-DISEASE, POSTMENOPAUSAL WOMEN, INSULIN-RESISTANCE, PHYSICAL-ACTIVITY, CIVIL-SERVANTS
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Epidemiology and Public Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Health Informatics
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Health Informatics > Clinical Epidemiology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/182464
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