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The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study (ARIC)

Project Period: 7/1/1985 - 1/31/2016
Contact: Dr. Jacqueline Wright

The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Studyexternal link icon (ARIC), is a prospective epidemiologic study conducted in four U.S. communities. ARIC is designed to investigate the etiology and natural history of atherosclerosis, the etiology of clinical atherosclerotic diseases, and variation in cardiovascular risk factors, medical care and disease by race, gender, location, and date.

ARIC includes two parts: the Cohort Component and the Community Surveillance Component. The Cohort Component began in 1987, and each ARIC field center randomly selected and recruited a cohort sample of approximately 4,000 individuals aged 45-64 from a defined population in their community. A total of 15,792 participants received an extensive examination, including medical, social, and demographic data. These participants were reexamined every three years with the first screen (baseline) occurring in 1987-89, the second in 1990-92, the third in 1993-95, and the fourth and last exam was in 1996-98. Follow-up occurs yearly by telephone to maintain contact with participants and to assess health status of the cohort.

In the Community Surveillance Component, currently ongoing, these four communities are investigated to determine the community-wide occurrence of hospitalized myocardial infarction and coronary heart disease deaths in men and women aged 35-84 years. Hospitalized stroke is investigated in cohort participants only. The study conducts community surveillance of inpatient heart failure (ages 55 years and older) and cohort surveillance outpatient heart failure events beginning in 2005. To date, the ARIC project has published 745 articles in peer-reviewed journals and other summary reports of ARIC data at various national and international scientific conferences and meetings.




Last Updated: July 2014




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