Independent clinical factors predicting reinfarction in the 1st year following an initial myocardial infarction were identified among 900 women and 2,795 men. Women were older (65.8 vs. 59.3 years; p < 0.001) but tended to suffer from reinfarction at a rate similar to that of men (6.9 vs. 5.6%, p = 0.17). Cumulative 1-month, 1- and 5.5-year all-cause mortality following the first infarction was higher among women who sustained reinfarction (43, 52 and 74%, respectively) than among men (29,30 and 51 %, respectively, p < 0.01 for each). Independent clinical predictors for recurrent myocardial infarction among women were (adjusted relative odds): peripheral vascular disease (3.2), postinfarction angina (2.3), diabetes mellitus (2.2), radiographic evidence of cardiomegaly (1.9), anterior location of the first infarction (2.0), congestive heart failure (1.8), prior angina (1.6) and age (10 years) increment (1.2). Predictive variables for men were: anterior infarct location (1.7), peripheral vascular disease (1.6), prior stroke (1.5), prior angina (1.4), systemic hypertension (1.3) and age (10 years) increment (1.1). Our data indicate (a) different cardiac risk factors for reinfarction among men and women after a first myocardial infarction, and (b) a prognostic advantage for men over women following reinfarction.