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Am J Med. 2008 Jan;121(1):72-8. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2007.08.041.

Carotid artery intima-media thickness in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

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  • 1Centro Malattie Metaboliche del Fegato, Dipartimento Medicina Interna, Universit√† di Milano, Milano, Italy.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To evaluate, in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease with no or mild alterations of liver function tests, carotid artery intima-media thickness and the presence of plaques and to define determinants of vascular damage.

METHODS:

A paired-sample case-control study: 125 patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and 250 controls, without a prior diagnosis of diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, matched for sex, age, and body mass index. B-mode ultrasound was used for evaluation of carotid intima-media thickness and presence of small plaques.

RESULTS:

A significant difference in mean values of intima-media thickness (0.89+/-0.26 and 0.64+/-0.14 mm, P = .0001) and prevalence of plaques (26 [21%] and 15 [6%], P < .001) was observed in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease patients and controls. Variables significantly associated with intima-media thickness higher than 0.64 mm (median value in controls), in both patients and controls were: age (P = .0001), systolic blood pressure (P = .004), total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (P < or = .02 and P = .01, respectively), fasting glucose (P = .0001), and cardiovascular risk (P = .0001) and, only in controls, metabolic syndrome (P = .0001), HOMA-insulin resistance (P = .01), and body mass index (P = .0003). At multivariate logistic regression performed in the overall series of subjects, independent risk predictors of intima-media thickness higher than 0.64 mm were presence of steatosis (odds ratio [OR] = 6.9), age (OR 6.0), and systolic blood pressure (OR 2.3).

CONCLUSION:

Patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, even with no or mild alterations of liver tests, should be considered at high risk for cardiovascular complications.

PMID:
18187076
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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