21 April 2021 In General Health

There is conflicting evidence for the association between alcohol consumption and common joint conditions such as Osteoarthritis (OA), which affects millions of people. We sought to determine the true association between alcohol intake and OA. We conducted a PRISMA systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies that reported associations between alcohol consumption and OA.

Pooled estimates of association were represented through odds ratios (ORs). Publication bias was assessed with Funnel and Galbraith plots, and risk of bias was assessed with the Newcastle Ottawa Scale. We included 29 studies and 25,192 subjects with OA and reported an OR between any alcohol consumption and OA of 0.79 (0.68-0.93), suggesting a protective effect. OR of weekly or more frequent use was 0.79 (0.65-0.97). When grouped by covariates, alcohol consumption was negatively associated with radiographic (0.83, 0.70-0.98), hand (0.80, 0.66-0.95) and knee OA (0.85, 0.72-0.99), North American ethnicity and female gender.

Subgroup analysis of unadjusted data resulted in an OR of 0.70 (0.55-0.89) but this disappeared upon analysis of studies with data adjusted for any covariate (0.93, 0.78-1.10). Whilst our pooled analysis suggest that weekly or more frequent alcohol consumption was negatively associated with OA, this was not observed when adjusted for confounding factors. Reasons for this include selection bias and lack of longitudinal exposure and adjustment for confounding variables.

Therefore, this meta-analysis provides evidence to dispel notions that alcohol use may be protective against OA.

21 April 2021 In General Health

Alcohol consumption is associated with multiple diseases and might contribute to vulnerability to SARS-CoV-2 infection. It can also catalyze exacerbations of mental and organic illnesses and predispose to behaviors with an increased risk of infection, severity of disease but also independently of sociopathic behavior and violence.

Globally, millions of premature deaths from excessive alcohol consumption occur each year. This paper discusses the effects of increased alcohol consumption and the most important consequences on the health of the population during the social isolation and lockdown during current COVID-19 pandemic.

21 April 2021 In Cardiovascular System

BACKGROUND: Studies regarding whether light to moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) have generated mixed results. Further, few studies have examined the potential impact of alcohol consumption on diverse disease outcomes simultaneously. We aimed to prospectively study the dose-response association between alcohol consumption and risk of CVD, cancer, and mortality.

METHODS: This study included 83,732 adult Chinese participants, free of CVD and cancer at baseline. Participants were categorized into 6 groups based on self-report alcohol consumption: 0, 1-25, 26-150, 151-350, 351-750, and > 750 g alcohol/wk. Incident cases of CVD, cancers, and mortality were confirmed by medical records. Hazard ratios (HRs) for the composite risk of these three outcomes, and each individual outcome, were calculated using Cox proportional hazard model.

RESULTS: During a median follow-up of 10.0 years, there were 6411 incident cases of CVD, 2947 cancers and 6646 deaths. We observed a J-shaped relation between alcohol intake and risk of CVD, cancer, and mortality, with the lowest risk at 25 g/wk., which is equivalent to ~ 2 servings/wk. Compared to consuming 1-25 g/wk., the adjusted HR for composite outcomes was 1.38 (95% confidence interval (CI):1.29-1.49) for non-drinker, 1.15 (95% CI: 1.04-1.27) for 26-150 g/wk., 1.22 (95% CI: 1.10-1.34) for 151-350 g/wk., 1.33 (95% CI: 1.21-1.46) for 351-750 g/wk., and 1.57 (95% CI: 1.30-1.90) for > 750 g/wk., after adjusting for age, sex, lifestyle, social economic status, and medication use.

CONCLUSIONS: Light alcohol consumption at ~ 25 g/wk was associated with lower risk of CVD, cancer, and mortality than none or higher consumption in Chinese adults.

21 April 2021 In Cardiovascular System

BACKGROUND: The associations of alcohol consumption and venous thromboembolism (VTE) have been investigated widely, but the conclusions were inconsistent.

OBJECTIVE: To summarize the relationship of alcohol consumption and VTE.

METHODS: This study has been registered in PROSPERO (ID: CRD42020164567). We searched the PubMed, Embase, Web of Science and the Cochrane Library databases from inception to September 2019 and reviewed the reference list of relevant articles to identify studies assessing the association between alcohol consumption and risk of VTE.

RESULTS: Fourteen cohorts and four case-control studies were included in the meta-analysis. Compared with non-drinkers, the risk of VTE was decreased (RR: 0.93; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.88-0.99) for alcohol drinkers. The pooled RRs of VTE were 0.91 (95% CI 0.84-0.99) for low to moderate alcohol intake (0.1-14.0 drinks/week) and 0.91 (95% CI 0.78-1.06) for high alcohol intake (>14.0 drinks/week) compared with non-drinker. Subgroup analysis showed liquor intake might slightly increase the risk of VTE (1.01; 95% CI 0.85-1.21) although the difference was not significant.

CONCLUSIONS: Alcohol consumption in low to moderate was associated with a lower risk of VTE. However, precautions are needed when providing personal drinking advice considering the potential harm of alcohol. Further studies are warranted to determine whether moderate alcohol consumption has a causal role in VTE.

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