Married people were 14 percent less likely to die after a heart attack than those who are single because of the support they receive from their spouse, a new study found.
The study presented at the British Cardiovascular Society (BCS) Conference in Manchester in the United States on Monday also demonstrated that those who are married are likely to spend fewer days in hospital than single people after a stroke.
The finding is based on the analysis of the data of over 25,000 patients who had a heart attack between January 2000 and March 2003 in Britain.
Every year there are 1,88,000 hospital episodes which are attributed to the heart attack in the United Kingdom which is around one in every three minutes.
Improvements in diagnosis and treatment driven by research mean that around seven out of 10 people now survive a heart attack.
It is not clear from this study why married people are more likely to survive a heart attack than single.
The scientists, however, feel it may be due to the physical and emotional support they receive from their spouse after the heart attack, reported Newswise.
Previous studies have shown marriage has a link to an improved heart attack outcome.
The new study by the team – collaboration between researchers at institutions including Aston Medical School and the University of East Anglia – is the first to suggest that married people recover faster than those who are single and likely to discharge quickly from the hospital.
The researchers feel the results show the need for doctors to consider the psychosocial effects of a heart attack, and consider them as a risk factor when treating and managing the discharge of a patient.
The researchers, however, said the study results should not be a cause for concern for single people who have had a heart attack.
“But they should certainly be a reminder to the medical community of the importance of considering the support a heart attack survivor will get once they’re discharged.” Dr Nicholas D. Gollop, the presenting author from the University of East Anglia, said.