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Circ J. 2005 Jul;69(7):798-801.

Abnormal ankle brachial indices may predict cardiovascular disease among diabetic patients without known heart disease.

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South Carolina Heart Center, Columbia, SC 29204, USA.



Cardiovascular disease remains the primary cause of diabetes-associated morbidity and mortality. Previous studies have failed to provide accurate, inexpensive, screening techniques to detect cardiovascular disease in diabetics. Ankle brachial indices (ABI) testing may be an effective screening technique for diabetics.


The aim of this 100-subject clinical study was to determine cardiovascular disease prevalence, via perfusion stress testing, in diabetic patients having abnormal ABI (<0.90) and without known heart disease who were referred to the South Carolina Heart Center, Columbia, SC for nuclear perfusion stress testing. Study data were analyzed using frequency and descriptive statistics and 2-sample T-testing. Mean subject age was 62+/-11 years, ABI 0.76+/-13, and ejection fraction 60+/-12%. Perfusion stress testing detected 49 abnormal electrocardiograms, 36 subjects with coronary ischemia, 20 with diminished left ventricular function, and 26 subjects having significant thinning of the myocardium. There were 71 subjects who tested positive for at least one form of cardiovascular disease. The sole predictive variable reaching significance for the presence of cardiovascular disease was an ABI score <0.90 (p< or =0.0001).


Cardiovascular disease may be predicted among diabetic patients via ABI scores and confirmed by nuclear perfusion testing.

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