Echogenecity of the carotid intima-media complex is related to cardiovascular risk factors, dyslipidemia, oxidative stress and inflammation The Prospective Investigation of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS) study
Journal article, 2009
Background: Increased carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT), measured by ultrasound, is related to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Since presence of echolucent plaques increases the risk further, we investigated if echogenecity of the carotid intima-media complex is related to markers of cardiovascular risk. Our aim was therefore to investigate if intima-media echogenecity is related to cardiovascular risk factors, or to markers of inflammation and oxidation in an exploratory investigation. Methods: The PIVUS cohort study is an observational study of 1016 (509 women and 507 men) randomly chosen individuals aged 70 living in Uppsala, Sweden. Carotid artery ultrasound measurements were performed. IMT and the grey scale median (GSM) value were calculated in the intima-media complex (IM-GSM) in the far wall of the common carotid artery. Traditional risk factors were evaluated together with indices of oxidative stress and inflammation. Results: In the multiple regression analysis, HDL-cholesterol, body mass index, conjugated diens, glutathione, e-selectin and TNF alfa were significantly related to IM-GSM. IMT was independently related to blood pressure, smoking and body mass index. Conclusion: The echolucency of the carotid intima-media was related to several cardiovascular risk factors not related to IMT, such as dyslipidemia, oxidative stress and inflammation. Since the echogenecity of the carotid intima-media complex was related to different risk factors compared to carotid IMT, it is worthwhile to further explore the usefulness of this new marker of the vascular wall. (C) 2009 Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.