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Korean J Intern Med. 2008 Jun;23(2):87-93.

Carotid artery intima-media thickness in Behcet's disease patients without significant cardiovascular involvement.

Author information

1
The Heart Center of Chonnam National University Hospital, Dong-gu, Gwangju, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND/AIMS:

Behcet's disease (BD) is a systemic disorder associated with a characteristic vasculitis that can involve both veins and arteries of all sizes. Endothelial activation or injury is a characteristic feature of BD. Endothelial dysfunction is widely regarded as being the initial lesion in the development of atherosclerosis. The carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT) is a widely accepted marker of subclinical atherosclerosis, We aimed to determine the carotid IMT in BD patients with using high-resolution B-mode Doppler ultrasonography.

METHODS:

We studied 40 patients (24 males, mean age: 39.1+/-8.5 years) who were diagnosed by the international diagnostic criteria of Behcet's disease and 20 healthy controls (13 males, mean age: 40.2+/-5.1 years), and the two groups were matched by age and gender. No subject in either group had a history of atherosclerosis or its complications. The clinical data, including the age of onset, the duration of disease, a history of medication, the activity score and the laboratory data were analyzed.

RESULTS:

The carotid IMT in the BD group was significantly higher than that in the control group (0.71+/-0.22 mm vs. 0.59+/-0.09 mm, respectively, p<0.01). Cardiac and major vessel involvements were not identified in the BD group. However, minor vascular involvements were documented in 2 patients with deep vein thrombosis, in 4 patients with superficial thrombophlebitis and in 2 patients with pseudoaneurysm. The carotid IMT in the patients with posterior uveitis or retinal vasculitis was higher than that of the patients without these findings (0.85+/-0.21 mm vs. 0.64+/-0.10 mm, respectively, p=0.007), but there was no difference of the IMT according to minor vascular involvement.

CONCLUSIONS:

Despite that there was no significant cardiovascular involvement in the BD patients, the carotid IMT was significantly higher in the BD patients as compared with the healthy controls.

PMID:
18646511
PMCID:
PMC2686971
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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