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J Korean Med Sci. 2007 Jun;22(3):536-45.

Quantitative analysis of aortic atherosclerosis in Korean female: a necropsy study.

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  • 1Department of Forensic Medicine, National Institute of Scientific Investigation, Seoul, Korea.


To assess the regional difference and influence of the biological variables on atherosclerosis in female, we analyzed 7 segments of aorta (2 ascending, 3 thoracic, and 2 abdominal) from 90 superficially healthy Korean women (39+/-14 yr of age) who died from external causes. Tissue specimens were macroscopically examined and histopathologically divided into 7 grades for scoring (ATHERO, from 0=intact, to 6=thrombi formation). Lumen diameter (LD), wall thickness (WT), intima thickness (INT), and media thickness (MED) were obtained by computed morphometry. Atherosclerosis was common in the distal infrarenal (C2), proximal thoracic (B1), and proximal ascending (A1) segments. Total 95.6% of all subjects had atherosclerosis of variable degree in one or more segments, but an aneurysmal change was not found. The number of atherosclerotic segments and atherosclerosis score in the 7 segments increased with aging. However, the body size did not affect the aortic size and ATHERO. With aging, LD and INT of the A1, B1 and C2 increased (p<.00001); WT of the B1 and C2 increased (p<.01); and MED of C2 decreased (p<.01). LD and WT of the B1 and C2 (p<.05), INT of the A1, B1 and C2 (p<.00001) increased, and MED of C2 decreased (p<.01) with ATHERO. These data suggest that age is simple but a reliable parameter for estimating the progression of atherosclerosis.

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