HealthDay News — Having a nonpsychotic mental disorder in adolescence is associated with increased risk of subsequent myocardial infarction, with stress resilience partially attenuating the association, according to a study presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress 2020: The Digital Experience, held virtually from Aug. 29 to Sept. 1.

Cecilia Bergh, Ph.D., from the Örebro University in Sweden, and colleagues conducted a register-based cohort study involving 238,013 men born between 1952 and 1956 who underwent compulsory military conscription examination. The association between nonpsychotic mental disorders in adolescence with subsequent myocardial infarction was examined, with the impact of stress resilience and physical fitness on this association also examined.

At conscription, 34,503 men were diagnosed with a nonpsychotic mental disorder. The researchers identified 5,891 diagnoses of first myocardial infarction. Nonpsychotic mental disorders were associated with an increased risk of myocardial infarction (hazard ratio, 1.51), with the association remaining significant after adjustment for potential confounders in adolescence, including systolic and diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, inflammation, cognitive function, parental socioeconomic index, and a summary disease score (hazard ratio, 1.24). Stress resilience and lifestyle factors assessed with a cardiovascular fitness test in adolescence further explained the link, with the association attenuated but remaining statistically significant after further adjustment (hazard ratio, 1.18).

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“Physical activity may also alleviate some of the negative consequences of stress,” Bergh said in a statement. “This is relevant to all adolescents, but those with poorer well-being could benefit from additional support to encourage exercise and to develop strategies to deal with stress.”

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