The echogenecity of the intima-media complex in the common carotid artery is closely related to the echogenecity in plaques
Journal article, 2007
Objective: The echogenecity measured by ultrasound of atherosclerotic plaques is related to future cardiovascular events. The aim of the present study is to relate the grey scale median of the intinia-media complex (IM-GSM) of the common carotid artery (CCA) to the echogenecity of carotid plaques. Material and results: In the Prospective Study of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS) study, a population-based study of 1016 subjects aged 70, carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT) and IM-GSM were evaluated by ultrasound and computerized analysis. Also the occurrence of plaque and plaque GSM were measured. The echogenecity of the plaques was also visually estimated by the Gray-Weale classification. In subjects with a carotid plaque (n=582), IM-GSM in CCA was correlated to GSM in the plaque (r=0.60, p<0.0001) independently of plaque size and IMT. IM-GSM in CCA was also correlated to the visually estimated echogenecity (p < 0.0001 for trend). Conclusion: IM-GSM of the CCA is closely related to the echogenecity in overt carotid plaques, regardless if evaluated by the same computerized method or evaluated visually. This finding suggests that IM-GSM of CCA could be an important and easily measurable characteristic of the carotid artery wall that could be obtained in almost all subjects and not only those with an overt plaque. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.