march 2022

Alcohol Consumption: A New Risk Factor for Arterial Stiffness?

The relationship between alcohol consumption and cardiovascular disease risk is complex. Low-to-moderate daily alcohol consumption (1-2 drinks/day) is associated with reduced risk, whereas greater amounts of alcohol consumption and a "binge" pattern of drinking are associated with increased cardiovascular risk and mortality. Arterial stiffness may help explain the complex relationship.

This integrated review summarizes data from studies examining the associations between alcohol consumption and pulse wave velocity, a gold standard measure of arterial stiffness. We also briefly review the concept and methodology of pulse wave velocity measurement as well as the mechanisms of alcohol-induced arterial stiffening.

Findings among the different studies reviewed were inconsistent with methodological challenges related to alcohol use assessment. While making specific conclusions regarding this relationship is tenuous; the data suggest that excessive alcohol consumption or a binge drinking pattern is associated with increased arterial stiffness.

Additional Info

  • Authors

    Hwang C. L.; Muchira J.; Hibner B. A.; Phillips S. A.; Piano M. R.
  • Issue

    Cardiovasc Toxicol . 2022 Mar;22(3):236-245.
  • Published Date

    march 2022