Cardiorespiratory Fitness Change and Mortality Risk Among Black and White Patients: Henry Ford Exercise Testing (FIT) Project

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The American journal of medicine


BACKGROUND: Little is known about the relationship of change in cardiorespiratory fitness and mortality risk in Black patients. This study assessed change in cardiorespiratory fitness and its association with all-cause mortality risk in Black and White patients.

METHODS: This is a retrospective, longitudinal, observational cohort study of 13,345 patients (age = 55 ± 11 years; 39% women; 26% black) who completed 2 exercise tests, at least 12 months apart at Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Mich. All-cause mortality was identified through April 2013. Data were analyzed in 2015-2016 using Cox regression to calculate hazard ratios (HR) for risk of mortality associated with change in sex-specific cardiorespiratory fitness.

RESULTS: Mean time between the tests was 3.4 years (interquartile range 1.9-5.6 years). During 9.1 years (interquartile range 6.3-11.6 years) of follow-up, there were 1931 (14%) deaths (16.5% black, 13.7% white). For both races, change in fitness from Low to the Intermediate/High category resulted in a significant reduction of death risk (HR 0.65 [95% confidence interval (CI), 0.49-0.87] for Black; HR 0.41 [95% CI, 0.34-0.51] for White). Each 1-metabolic-equivalent-of-task increase was associated with a reduced mortality risk in black (HR 0.84 [95% CI, 0.81-0.89]) and white (HR 0.87 [95% CI, 0.82-0.86]) patients. There was no interaction by race.

CONCLUSIONS: Among black and white patients, change in cardiorespiratory fitness from Low to Intermediate/High fitness was associated with a 35% and 59% lower risk of all-cause mortality, respectively.

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African Continental Ancestry Group; European Continental Ancestry Group; Exercise Test; Female; Humans; Longitudinal Studies; Male; Middle Aged; Mortality; Physical Fitness; Proportional Hazards Models; Retrospective Studies; Risk Factors; Sex Factors

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