Objectives: To assess and compare associations between childhood maltreatment and cardiovascular disease (CVD) in men and women in the UK. In secondary analyses, we also explored possible age differences and associations with early onset CVD (<50 years). Methods: We included 157 311 participants from the UK Biobank who had information on physical, sexual or emotional abuse, emotional or physical neglect. CVD outcomes were defined as any CVD, hypertensive disease, ischaemic heart disease (IHD) and cerebrovascular disease. These were extracted from self-report, blood pressure measurements, hospital register and death register. The associations between maltreatment and CVD were assessed using Poisson regression with robust variance to estimate risk ratios, stratified by sex and adjusted for socioeconomic and demographic factors. Results: All types of maltreatment were associated with increased risk of CVD and IHD in both sexes. Additionally, in women all types of maltreatment were associated with higher risk of hypertensive disease, and all, except emotional neglect, were associated with cerebrovascular disease. In men, all but sexual abuse, were associated with higher risk of hypertensive disease, and all, except physical and sexual abuse, were associated with cerebrovascular disease. Associations were generally stronger in women, and individuals who were younger at baseline had stronger associations of childhood maltreatment with any CVD and IHD, but age differences were less evident when only early onset CVD was considered. Conclusions: Childhood maltreatment was consistently associated with CVD and stronger associations were generally observed in women and seemed to be stronger for early onset CVD.
- cardiac risk factors and prevention
- heart disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine