The association between serum selenium concentration and the risk of myocardial infarction was studied in a nested case-control study. Altogether 59 men, initially free of disease, aged 28-54 at the time of blood sampling, died suddenly or experienced a fatal or non-fatal myocardial infarction during a six year follow-up period. Case-control pairs came from a population of 9364 persons examined in 1979-80 in the second Tromsø Heart Study. No significant difference was observed between serum selenium in cases and controls (p = 0.34). The major determinants of myocardial infarction and sudden death were raised levels of serum cholesterol and triglycerides (p less than or equal to 0.001) and high systolic blood pressure (p less than 0.05). Thus, in this population with intermediate selenium intake, low serum selenium is not associated with an excess risk of myocardial infarction.
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