Influence of arterial stiffness on cardiovascular outcome in patients without high blood pressure

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Abstract

Objective

Although blood pressure (BP) is a major determinant of arterial stiffness, whether high pulse wave velocity (PWV) adversely influences cardiac parameters and cardiovascular (CV) outcome in patients without high BP remains unclear.

Methods

Outpatients without high BP (n=320), defined as systolic BP ≥140 mm Hg, were enrolled in this retrospective study. At baseline, all patients underwent echocardiography and multidetector CT to determine the coronary artery calcification (CAC) score. Arterial stiffness was assessed based on brachial-ankle PWV (baPWV), from which patients were classified into two groups: those with high (≥18 m/s, n=89) and low baPWV (<18 m/s, n=231). Cardiac parameters and CV event incidence during the follow-up period were compared between these groups.

Results

In multivariable linear regression analysis, baPWV was significantly associated with CAC score and serum N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide hormone level, after adjustment for confounding factors. In multivariable logistic regression analysis, baPWV ≥18 m/s was significantly associated with CAC score ≥400 (OR 2.466, 95% CI 1.012 to 6.009, p=0.0471). Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that the high-baPWV group experienced more CV events during the 575 days of follow-up (20% vs 6%, p=0.0003).

Conclusions

High baPWV was associated with greater CAC and a high risk of a future CV event, especially coronary artery disease, even in patients without high BP.

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