Alcohol Consumption Shows No Effect on Coronary Arteries


Researchers using coronary CT angiography (CTA) have found no association between light to moderate alcohol consumption and coronary artery disease (CAD), according to a study being presented today at RSNA 2016.

Júlia Karády, MD, from the MTA-SE Cardiovascular Imaging Research Group, Heart and Vascular Center at Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary, and colleagues enrolled 1,925 patients referred for coronary CTA in their study. Patients with history of stroke, acute myocardial infarction or coronary revascularization were excluded. Based on the presence of any plaque on coronary CTA, patients were classified in CAD and no CAD groups.

Using univariate analysis to compare CAD and no CAD patients, researchers found significant difference regarding cardiovascular risk factors but no difference in alcohol consumption. After adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors with logistic regression they found no association between alcohol intake and the presence of CAD.

“Our study suggests that the amount of weekly alcohol consumption does not show association with the presence of CAD. We did not detect any association between alcohol intake and CAD among light drinkers either. In addition, we did not find any association between the different alcohol types and the presence of coronary atherosclerosis,” the authors write.

A representative example of coronary CT angiography
Figure 1. A representative example of coronary CT angiography of a patient who reported no alcohol consumption (panel A) and a patient who reported moderate alcohol consumption (panel B). The age and gender matched patients display the same extent and severity of coronary artery disease.