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Modification effects of immigration status and comorbidities on associations of heat and heatwave with stroke morbidity.

BACKGROUND: Heat and heatwave have been associated with stroke morbidity, but it is still unclear whether immigrants from different geographic regions and patients with comorbidity are more vulnerable to heat and heatwave.

METHODS: Time-stratified case-crossover design combined with generalized additive quasi-Poisson models were used to quantify the relative risks (RR) of heat and heatwave on first-ever stroke morbidity during 0-7 lag days. Attributable fractions (AF) were estimated to assess the first-ever stroke morbidity burden due to heat and heatwave. Stratified analyses for sex, age, disease subtypes, resident characteristics, and comorbidity type were performed to identify potential modification effects.

RESULTS: Heat and heatwave were associated with first-ever stroke morbidity, with the AF of 2.535% (95% eCI: 0.748, 4.205) and 2.409% (95% CI: 1.228, 3.400), respectively. Among northern and southern immigrants, the AF for heat was 2.806% (0.031, 5.069) and 2.798% (0.757, 4.428), respectively, and the AF for heatwave was 2.918% (0.561, 4.618) and 2.387% (1.174, 3.398), respectively, but the effects of both on natives were statistically insignificant. Among patients with hypertension, dyslipidemia, or diabetes, the AF for heat was 3.318% (1.225, 5.007), 4.237% (1.037, 6.770), and 4.860% (1.171, 7.827), respectively, and the AF for heatwave was 2.960% (1.701, 3.993), 2.771% (0.704, 4.308), and 2.652% (0.653, 4.185), respectively. However, the effects of both on patients without comorbidity were statistically insignificant.

CONCLUSION: Heat and heatwave are associated with an increased risk of first-ever stroke morbidity among immigrants and those with comorbid hypertension, dyslipidemia, or diabetes, with the effects primarily due to non-native individuals.

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