Korean Circ J.  2007 Aug;37(8):365-372. 10.4070/kcj.2007.37.8.365.

Prognostic Significance of Descending Thoracic Aorta Intima-Media Thickness in Patients with Coronary Atherosclerosis

Affiliations
  • 1Division of Cardiology, Heart Center, College of Medicine, Konyang University, Daejeon, Korea. janghobae@yahoo.co.kr

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: While the clinical significance of descending thoracic aorta intima-media thickness (DTA-IMT) remains unclear, common carotid IMT (CIMT) is known to be associated with major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) in patients with atherosclerotic disease.
SUBJECTS AND METHODS
A total of 104 patients (mean age, 59 yrs; 69 male) with angiographically proven coronary atherosclerosis underwent transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) for DTA-IMT measurement and carotid scanning for CIMT measurement. The patients were divided into two groups based on the median IMT value, and they were followed up for cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality for a period of 50+/-21 months.
RESULTS
Patients having a higher DTA-IMT value (n=44, >2.1 mm) had a higher chance of stroke (6.7% vs. 2.8%, p=0.04), peripheral vascular disease (6.7% vs. 1.9%, p=0.02), and death (2.9% vs. 0%, p=0.04) than those who had lower DTA-IMT values (n=60, < or =2.1 mm). The patients who had higher CIMT values (n=49, >0.089 mm) had a higher chance of peripheral vascular disease (16% vs 2%, p=0.009) than those having lower IMT values (n=55, < or =0.089 mm). However, there was no significant difference between the groups in terms of recurrent chest pain, heart failure, syncope, myocardial infarction or chronic kidney disease during the follow-up period. Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that increased DTA-IMT was associated with stroke (OR, 4.29; 95% CI, 1.076-17.181; p=0.039) and peripheral vascular disease (OR, 9.37; 95% CI, 1.571-55.499; p=0.014), whereas increased CIMT was associated with peripheral vascular disease (OR, 14.365; 95% CI, 1.050-196.540; p=0.046).
CONCLUSION
This study suggests that descending thoracic aorta IMT is more closely associated with prognosis in patients with coronary atherosclerosis than CIMT.

Keyword

Aorta; Carotid arteries; Atherosclerosis
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