To examine how different aspects of social relationships are associated with incident cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality.In 4139 participants from the population-based Heinz Nixdorf Recall study without previous cardiovascular disease (mean (SD) age 59.1 (7.7) years, 46.7% men), the association of self-reported instrumental, emotional and financial support and social integration at baseline with incident fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality during 13.4-year follow-up was assessed in five different multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression models: minimally adjusted model (adjusting for age, sex, social integration or social support, respectively); biological model (minimally adjusted+systolic blood pressure, low-density and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, glycated haemoglobin, body mass index, antihypertensive medication, lipid-lowering medication and antidiabetic medication); health behaviour model (minimally adjusted+alcohol consumption, smoking and physical activity); socioeconomic model (minimally adjusted+income, education and employment); and depression model (minimally adjusted+depression, antidepressants and anxiolytics).339 cardiovascular events and 530 deaths occurred during follow-up. Lack of financial support was associated with an increased cardiovascular event risk (minimally adjusted HR=1.30(95% CI 1.01 to 1.67)). Lack of social integration (social isolation) was associated with increased mortality (minimally adjusted HR=1.47 (95% CI 1.09 to 1.97)). Effect estimates did not decrease to a relevant extent in any regression model.Perceiving a lack of financial support is associated with a higher cardiovascular event incidence, and being socially isolated is associated with increased all-cause mortality. Future studies should investigate how persons with deficient social relationships could benefit from targeted interventions.
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