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J Hypertens. 2002 Jan;20(1):79-84.

Reduced arterial distensibility is a predictor of cardiovascular disease in patients after renal transplantation.

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  • 1Department of Medicine D, University of Münster, Albert-Schweitzer-Strasse 33, D-48149 Münster, Germany.



Arterial distensibility is reduced in end-stage renal failure and also after renal transplantation. The aim of the present study was to test the hypothesis that reduced carotid artery distensibility is a predictor of cardiovascular disease in patients after renal transplantation.


Sixty-eight asymptomatic renal transplant recipients were studied between March 1990 and December 1992, 3-6 months after transplantation. The mean duration of follow-up was 95 +/- 2 months (mean +/- SEM). At entry, vessel wall movements of the common carotid artery were recorded using a pulsed multigate Doppler system; blood pressure was measured by sphygmomanometry.


Nineteen cardiovascular events (CVE) occurred during follow-up, leading to death in six cases. The distensibility coefficient of the common carotid artery was significantly lower in patients with CVE than in those without CVE (12.2 +/- 1.0 10-3/kPa versus 16.8 +/- 0.7 10-3/kPa, P < 0.005). Logistic regression analysis showed that the occurrence of cardiovascular disease during follow-up was related to carotid artery distensibility (P < 0.05), independent of sex, age, smoking habits, carotid artery end-diastolic diameter, systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels, heart rate, serum creatinine, cholesterol and haemoglobin levels. Patients with a distensibility coefficient above the age-adjusted mean had a significantly longer interval free of cardiovascular disease than patients with a distensibility coefficient below the age-adjusted mean (P < 0.01).


The distensibility of the common carotid artery is an independent predictor of cardiovascular disease in renal transplant recipients.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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