The factors associated with the development of heart failure and of atrial fibrillation in elderly patients were studied in a prospective clinico-pathological series of 171 cases. Multiple logistic analyses allowed the contributions of multiple factors to be assessed simultaneously. Senile cardiac amyloidosis, ischaemic heart disease and atrial fibrillation were significantly associated with heart failure and had additive effects. Senile cardiac amyloidosis, ischaemic heart disease, mitral valve ballooning and higher age were significantly associated with atrial fibrillation but their additive effects were modified by significant interactions between ischaemic heart disease and mitral valve ballooning (whose effects were multiplicative) and senile cardiac amyloidosis and age (the age effect being confined to those without amyloidosis).
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