Observational studies have described associations between multiple sclerosis (MS) and heart diseases, but the results were mixed.
Medline, Embase, and Cochrane CENTRAL were searched up to 5 October 2020 according to a protocol (PROSPERO registration number CRD42020184493). We included longitudinal non-randomized studies of exposure comparing the incidence of acquired heart diseases between people with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) and people without multiple sclerosis. We used ROBINS-E and the GRADE approach to assess risk of bias and the certainty of evidence, respectively. Data were pooled using random-effect models.
Of 5,159 studies, nine studies met the inclusion criteria. MS was associated with an increased risk for myocardial infarction (HR 1.6, 95% CI 1.2 to 2.0, I2 86%, n = 1,209,079) and heart failure (HR 1.7, 95% CI 1.3 to 2.2, I2 49%, n = 489,814). The associations were more pronounced among women and younger people in subgroup analyses. We found no difference for ischemic heart disease (HR 1.0, 95% CI 0.8 to 1.4, I2 86%, n = 679,378) and bradycardia (HR 1.5, 95% CI 0.4 to 5.0, I2 50%, n = 187,810). The risk of atrial fibrillation was lower in pwMS (HR 0.7, 95% CI 0.6 to 0.8, I2 0%, n = 354,070), but the risk of bias was high, and the certainty of evidence was rated as very low. One study found more cases of infectious endocarditis among pwMS (HR 1.2, 95% CI 1.0 to 1.4, n = 83,712).
Myocardial infarction and heart failure should be considered in people with multiple sclerosis during follow-up examinations.

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