Advanced Carotid Atherosclerosis and the Risk of Subsequent Major Cardiovascular Events: Carotid Ultrasound Study

Elkilany, Galal E., Elmahal, Mohammed, Elsaady, Amenda, Singh, Jaipaul orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-3200-3949, Lohana, Petras, Gupta, Rajeev, Abdelrahman, Madian and Allah, Sherif Baath (2021) Advanced Carotid Atherosclerosis and the Risk of Subsequent Major Cardiovascular Events: Carotid Ultrasound Study. Atherosclerosis: Open Access, 6 (2).

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Introduction: Very little is known about the role of atherosclerotic carotid plaque morphology, vulnerability, and Total Plaque Area (TPA) in the development of Major Cardiovascular Events (MCVE). Aim of this study: To assess the role of carotid atherosclerosis and the plaque morphology in the prediction of MCVE.
Importance of the study: A better understanding of the role of detection of atherosclerosis and unstable plaque morphology can help to improve strategies for prevention of Acute Cardiovascular Events (ACVE) worldwide. Methods: This study analyzed the medical records of 452 patients with 2.5-years follow-up. The primary outcomes were the composite of first occurrence of stroke, cardiovascular death, and Acute Coronary Syndromes (ACS) hospitalization.
Results: The results show that carotid atherosclerosis was present in 44% of patients (n=103) and this was associated with increasing conventional cardiovascular risk factors and extent of symptomatic vascular disease. During 2.5 years
follow-up, 10% of patients experienced ≥ 2 MCVE. After adjustment for cardiovascular risk factors, the risk of ACS and stroke increased by 23% (95% Confidence Interval [CI]), and 45% (95% confidence interval), respectively in patients with carotid ultrasonic (US) evidence of advanced carotid atherosclerosis in comparison to control (P<0.001). The relative increase of cerebrovascular events was 22% in patients with carotid US evidence of vulnerable plaque morphology versus
benign morphology. The high risk for all-cause and cardiovascular death of these patients remained significant after adjustment for various established cardiovascular risk factors in multivariable regression analysis (adjusted hazard ratio 2.4, P<0.001; compared to patients without US evidence of advanced carotid atherosclerosis features).
Conclusion: It is concluded that carotid TPA and features of vulnerability were associated with an increased risk of MCVE.

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