Daylight Savings Time Changes May Affect Heart
A team of physicians at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) El Paso is studying the possible correlation between Daylight Savings Time (DST) and heart disease symptoms.
Preliminary results from a study led by cardiology fellow Waseem Shami, M.D., and guided by TTUHSC El Paso Professor and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine Debabrata Mukherjee, M.D., suggest that in the week after the time change, emergency rooms and doctors’ offices see an increase in patients with chest pain or shortness of breath, which could be a result of DST sleep deprivation.
For their study, physicians in the TTUHSC El Paso Department of Internal Medicine Division of Cardiology reviewed eight years worth of cardiovascular diagnostic studies – mainly stress tests. According to the physicians, there seems to be a surge in stress tests ordered for people with cardiac symptoms in the spring, when sleep is lost by one hour.
The final results of the study will be presented at a national conference next year.