Aim: The viscoelastic properties of the artery are known to be altered in patients with vascular diseases. However, few studies have evaluated the viscoelasticity of the vascular wall in humans. We sought to investigate the degree of viscoelastic deterioration of the carotid artery and assess its clinical implications. Methods: Between January 2011 and June 2013, patients in whom the toe-brachial index was measured at the vascular laboratory were included in this single-institute retrospective observational study. I＊, a parameter of viscoelastic deterioration, was computed using a non-invasive ultrasonic Doppler effect sensor on the carotid artery. I＊ is a non-dimensional value, and I＊＞0 is considered abnormal. Other patient characteristics were identified and tested for correlations with I＊. Results: The study included 383 patients. The mean I＊ value was 0.13±0.22 with a normal distribution. Factors that increased the I＊ value were a female sex (0.18±0.23 vs. 0.10±0.21, P＜0.001), age ≥ 60 (0.14±0.22 vs. 0.06±0.23, P＜0.05) and systolic blood pressure of ＞140 (0.15±0.22 vs. 0.10±0.22, P＜0.05). I＊ abnormality was a significant risk factor for coronary artery disease (OR 2.20, 95% CI 1.00-4.80, P＜0.05) in a univariate analysis. In the multivariate analysis, I＊ abnormality was also found to be an independent risk factor for coronary artery disease (OR 4.56, 95% CI 1.21-30.1, P＜0.05). Conclusions: I＊ may reflect the degree of atherosclerotic changes in the arterial wall and could possibly be used to predict coronary artery disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Biochemistry, medical