Relationship of Aortic Wall Distensibility to Mitral and Aortic Valve Calcification: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis

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Data are limited on whether valvular calcification is associated with aortic wall stiffness. We tested whether aortic valve calcification (AVC) and/or mitral valve calcification (MVC) is inversely associated with aortic distensibility (AD). Cross-sectional study conducted in a subset of the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) included 3676 MESA participants aged 44 to 84 years with AD measured with magnetic resonance imaging and with AVC and MVC measured with noncontrast cardiac computed tomography scans. Both AVC and MVC were divided into 3 categories: zero, < median values (low), and ≥ median values (high) for patients with nonzero values. Overall, 88% (n = 3256) and 92% (n = 3365) of participants had zero AVC and MVC, while 6% (n = 211) and 4% (n = 156) had low, and 6% (n = 209) and 4% (n = 155) had high values of AVC and MVC, respectively. The AVC was independently associated with AD after adjusting for age, gender, and ethnicity (P = .035). No association was noted between AVC groups and AD after adjustment for all covariates or MVC groups and AD in any model.

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