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Lupus. 2006;15(12):873-6.

Aortic valve calcification in systemic lupus erythematosus.

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1
Division of Rheumatology, Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA.

Abstract

Aortic valve calcification is associated with atherosclerosis in the general population. We investigated the prevalence of and associates of aortic valve calcification in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). One-hundred and ninety-nine SLE patients enrolled in a clinical trial had aortic valve calcification assessed by helical CT. The patients had a mean age of 44.3 +/- 11.4 years and were 92% female, 61% Caucasian, 34% African-American, 2% Asian and 2% Hispanic. Aortic valve calcification was present in 1.5%, whereas coronary calcium was found in 43% and carotid plaque in 17%. Among cardiovascular risk factors, hs-CRP (P = 0.0592), fibrinogen (P = 0.0507), and lipoprotein(a) (P = 0.0250), were associated with aortic valve calcification. Prednisone use (P = 0.049) and use of methotrexate (P = 0.0174) were also associated with aortic valve calcification. Aortic valve calcification was associated with antiphospholipid antibody positivity (0.0287) (lupus anticoagulant, by dilute Russell viper venom time). It was not associated with coronary calcium or carotid plaque. Aortic valve calcification, although rare in SLE, was associated with some novel cardiovascular risk factors and with a marker of hypercoagulability (lupus anticoagulant). In contrast to the general population, aortic valve calcification in SLE is not associated with subclinical measures of atherosclerosis, such as coronary calcium or carotid plaque.

PMID:
17211993
DOI:
10.1177/0961203306071709
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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