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Search Plan and Results


What is the relationship between alcohol intake and coronary heart disease? (DGAC 2010)

Date Searched


Inclusion Criteria

  • January 1, 1995 through June 8, 2009
  • Systematic reviews/meta-analyses only
  • Human subjects
  • English language
  • International
  • Sample size: Minimum of 10 subjects per study arm; preference for larger sizes, if available
  • Dropout rate: Less than 20%; preference for smaller dropout rates
  • Ages: Adults of legal drinking age (21 years and older)
  • Populations: Healthy, those with elevated chronic disease risk, those diagnosed with the highly prevalent chronic diseases (CHD/CVD, hypertension, Type 2 diabetes,  osteoporosis, osteopenia and obesity) and those with breast cancer, colon cancer and/or prostate cancer.


Exclusion Criteria

  • Medical treatment/therapy
  • Diseased subjects (exceptions noted)
  • Hospitalized patients
  • Malnourished/third-world populations or disease incidence not relative to US population (e.g., malaria)
  • Animal studies
  • In vitro studies
  • Articles not peer reviewed (websites, magazine articles, Federal reports, etc.)
  • Cross-sectional study design.

Search Terms & Electronic Databases Used

"Cardiovascular Diseases"[Mesh] OR “Heart  Diseases"[Mesh] OR "Stroke"[Mesh] AND("Ethanol"[Mesh] OR “Alcohol Drinking”[mesh] OR "Alcoholic Beverages"[Mesh]) "Stroke"[Mesh] AND ("Ethanol"[Mesh] OR “Alcohol Drinking”[mesh] OR "Alcoholic Beverages"[Mesh])

Total hits from all electronic database searches: 100

Total articles identified to review from electronic databases: 23

Articles identified via handsearch or other means:


Summary of Articles Identified to Review

Number of Primary Articles Identified: 0

Number of Review Articles Identified: 6

Total Number of Articles Identified: 6

Number of Articles Reviewed but Excluded: 17


List of Included Articles for Evidence Analysis

Bagnardi V, Zatonski W, Scotti L, La Vecchia C, Corrao G. Does drinking pattern modify the effect of alcohol on the risk of coronary heart disease? Evidence from a meta-analysis. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2008 Jul; 62 (7): 615-619. PMID : 18559444.

Britton A, McKee M.The relation between alcohol and cardiovascular disease in Eastern Europe: Explaining the paradox. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2000 May; 54 (5): 328-332. Review. PMID : 10814651.

Cleophas TJ. Wine, beer and spirits and the risk of myocardial infarction: A systematic review. Biomed Pharmacother. 1999 Oct; 53 (9): 417-423. Review. PMID: 10554677.

Corrao G, Rubbiati L, Bagnardi V, Zambon A, Poikolainen K. Alcohol and coronary heart disease: A meta-analysis. Addiction. 2000 Oct; 95 (10): 1, 505-1, 523.  PMID : 11070527.

Di Castelnuovo A, Rotondo S, Iacoviello L, Donati MB, De Gaetano G. Meta-analysis of wine and beer consumption in relation to vascular risk. Circulation. 2002 Jun 18; 105 (24): 2, 836-2, 844.  PMID : 12070110.

Rimm EB, Williams P, Fosher K, Criqui M, Stampfer MJ. Moderate alcohol intake and lower risk of coronary heart disease: Meta-analysis of effects on lipids and haemostatic factors. BMJ. 1999 Dec 11; 319 (7224): 1, 523-1, 528.  PMID : 10591709; PMCID: PMC 28294.

List of Excluded Articles with Reason


Article Reason for Exclusion

Barnett AG, Dobson AJ. Excess in cardiovascular events on Mondays: A meta-analysis and prospective study. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2005 Feb; 59 (2): 109-114. Review. PMID: 15650141; PMCID: PMC1733011.

Examines cardiovascular events on Mondays, not alcohol and incident CVD/CHD.

Chatfield J; Stroke Council of the American Heart Association. American Heart Association scientific statement on the primary prevention of ischemic stroke. Am Fam Physician. 2001 Aug 1; 64 (3): 513-514. PMID: 11515840.

Does not specifically answer question related to alcohol intake and CVD/CHD.

Chen L, Davey Smith G, Harbord RM, Lewis SJ. Alcohol intake and blood pressure: A systematic review implementing a Mendelian randomization approach. PLoS Med. 2008 Mar 4; 5 (3): e52. Review. PMID: 18318597; PMCID: PMC2265305. 

Does not specifically answer question of CVD/CHD. Focus is blood pressure.

Daniel S, Bereczki D. Alcohol as a risk factor for hemorrhagic stroke. Ideggyogy Sz. 2004 Jul 20; 57 (7-8): 247-256. Review. PMID:15330400.

Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. Focus is hemorrhagic stroke.

Djoussé L, Gaziano JM. Alcohol consumption and heart failure: A systematic review. Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2008 Apr; 10 (2): 117-120. Review. PMID: 18417065; PMCID: PMC2365733

Narrative review.
Hillbom M, Juvela S, Numminen H.Alcohol intake and the risk of stroke. J Cardiovasc Risk. 1999 Aug; 6 (4): 223-228. Review. PMID: 10501273.

Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. Focus is stroke.

de Gaetano G, Di Castelnuovo A, Rotondo S, Iacoviello L, Donati MB. A meta-analysis of studies on wine and beer and cardiovascular disease. Pathophysiol Haemost Thromb. 2002 Sep-Dec; 32(5-6): 353-355. PMID: 13679674.

Reports on same meta-analysis as the included Di Castelnuovo, et al, 2002.

Grønbaek M.Type of alcohol and mortality from cardiovascular disease. Food Chem Toxicol. 1999 Sep-Oct; 37 (9-10): 921-924. PMID: 10541445. Narrative review.
Howard AA, Arnsten JH, Gourevitch MN. Effect of alcohol consumption on diabetes mellitus: A systematic review. Ann Intern Med. 2004 Feb 3; 140 (3): 211-219. PMID: 14757619. Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. The focus is diabetes.
Koppes LL, Dekker JM, Hendriks HF, Bouter LM, Heine RJ. Exploring the relationship between alcohol consumption and non-fatal or fatal stroke: A systematic review. Diabetologia. 2006 Apr; 49 (4): 648-652. Epub 2006 Feb 4. PMID: 16463045. Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. Focus is stroke.
Marmot MG.Alcohol and coronary heart disease. Int J Epidemiol. 2001 Aug; 30 (4): 724-729. PMID: 11511592. Narrative review.
Mazzaglia G, Britton AR, Altmann DR, Chenet L.Exploring the relationship between alcohol consumption and non-fatal or fatal stroke: A systematic review. Dec; 96 (12): 1, 743-1, 756. Review. PMID: 11784467. Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. Focus is stroke.
Mukamal KJ, Rimm EB.Alcohol's effects on the risk for coronary heart disease. Alcohol Res Health. 2001; 25 (4): 255-261. Review. PMID: 11910702. Narrative review.

Mukamal KJ. Alcohol use and prognosis in patients with coronary heart disease. Prev Cardiol. 2003 Spring; 6 (2): 93-98. Review. PMID: 12732795.

Met excluded criteria: Subjects diagnosed with CHD.

Reynolds K, Lewis B, Nolen JD, Kinney GL, Sathya B,   He J. Alcohol consumption and risk of stroke: A meta-analysis. JAMA. 2003 Feb 5; 289 (5): 579-588. Erratum in: JAMA. 2003 Jun 4; 289 (21): 2, 798. Lewis, Brian L [corrected to Lewis, Brian]. PMID: 12578491.

Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD. Focus is stroke.

Rotondo S, Di Castelnuovo A, de Gaetano G. The relationship between wine consumption and cardiovascular risk: From epidemiological evidence to biological plausibility. Ital Heart J. 2001 Jan; 2 (1): 1-8. Review. PMID: 11214695.

Narrative review.
Xin X, He J, Frontini MG, Ogden LG, Motsamai OI, Whelton PK. Effects of Alcohol Reduction on Blood Pressure: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Hypertension. 2001 Nov; 38 (5): 1, 112-1, 117.

Does not directly answer question related to CVD/CHD.