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Methamphetamine Use May Be Related to Heart Disease

Join Together, February 15, 2007

Research Summary

Young patients diagnosed with a disease of the heart muscle called cardiomyopathy had a high incidence of methamphetamine use, reseachers found in a recent study.

Reuters reported Feb. 14 that researchers led by Khung-Keong Yeo of the University of California Davis Medical Center estimated that meth use triples the risk of cardiomyopathy. Yeo and colleagues drew their conclusions from an examination of the medical records of 107 cardiomyopathy patients under age 45.

Yeo said the drug could cause the disease by causing spasms in the heart arteries, by direct toxicity, by elevating blood pressure and heart rate, or by causing hardening of the arteries.

The study appears in the February 2007 issue of the American Journal of Medicine.

Yeo, K.K., et al. (2007) The Association of Methamphetamine Use and Cardiomyopathy in Young Patients. The American Journal of Medicine, 120(2): 165-171.