Is Snow Shoveling And Heart Attack Risk In Men: The Only Reason Behind The Increasing Number Of Deaths In Winter?

First Posted: Feb 16, 2017 03:41 AM EST

Latest research study on snow shoveling and heart attack risk in men revealed that the physical pressure that men undertake while shoveling snow in the driveway or sidewalk could be the reason behind the increased number of heart attacks in men after a heavy snowfall. This assumption was made on the fact that men are more likely to shovel snow than women. How far could this be true?

A team of Canadian researchers conducted a survey on the number of people admitted to hospitals with heart attack or myocardial infarction after a heavy snowfall in Quebec, Canada. They found that the chances of men getting a heart attack after snowfall is 16 percent higher than women, Fox News reported.

The study results that were published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal showed that 60 percent of the total 128,073 people admitted to hospitals with heart ailments in 1981-2014 were men. The study pointed out that apart from the cold climate and road accidents due to the snowfall, snow shoveling is a major factor that leads to heart attacks, especially in men, Time reported.

Snow shoveling can be a strenuous exercise, which significantly increases the heart rate. Many times it leads to myocardial infarction in men either because of their sedentary lifestyle or due to the combined impact of the cold climate and extensive cardiovascular exercise.

The study, however, has many limitations. This raises questions regarding the credibility of the final conclusion made by the researchers. They did not record whether or not the men who were admitted in the hospitals had shoveled snow. If they did, then did they do it manually with a shovel or used a snow blower? Furthermore, they did not mention the impact of other factors like age, change in climatic conditions, lifestyle and physical exercising habits on the final results obtained, according to Forbes.

Under these circumstances, assuming that snow shoveling and heart attack risk in men are the only reason behind the increasing number of deaths associated with myocardial infractions, it does not seem to be completely accurate.

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