Elevated homocysteine increases the risk of left atrial/left atrial appendage thrombus in non-valvular atrial fibrillation with low CHA2DS2-VASc score

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To assess the association and the predictive value of plasma homocysteine (Hcy) levels with LA/LAA thrombus in non-valvular Atrial fibrillation (AF) patients with low CHA2DS2-VASc score.

Methods and results

Eight hundred and eighty-eight consecutive patients in non-valvular AF with CHA2DS2-VASc score of 0 and 1 were enrolled. All patients routinely underwent transthoracic echocardiography and transoesophageal echocardiography. A total of thirty-two patients had LA/LAA thrombus. Compared with patients without LA/LAA thrombus, plasma Hcy levels were significantly higher in patients with LA/LAA thrombus (16.5 ± 4.8 mmol/L vs. 13.4 ± 4.1 mmol/L, P = 0.009). In multivariate analysis, Hcy was independently associated with LA/LAA thrombus (OR 1.048, 95% CI 1.007–1.090, P = 0.022). Hcy demonstrated a significant predictive value with area under the curve of 0.722 (95% CI 0.662–0.781, P < 0.001). The optimal cut-off point for Hcy predicting LA/LAA thrombus was 13.5 mmol/L (sensitivity 67%, specificity 65%). Patients with Hcy ≥13.5 mmol/L had higher prevalence of LA/LAA thrombus compared with those with Hcy <13.5 mmol/L (6.1% vs. 2.1%, P < 0.001). Elevated Hcy significantly increased the risk of LA/LAA thrombus in patients with CHA2DS2-VASc score of 0 and 1 (OR 11.789, 95% CI 1.437–96.746, P = 0.022; OR 2.256, 95% CI 1.007–5.155, P = 0.048, respectively).


Elevated plasma Hcy increases the risk of LA/LAA thrombus in non-valvular AF patients with low CHA2DS2-VASc score, thus it should be taken into account in prediction of thromboembolism.

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