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Am J Med. 2012 Apr;125(4):394-8. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2011.09.013. Epub 2012 Feb 3.

The cardiovascular risk profile of atherosclerotic gastrointestinal ischemia is different from other vascular beds.

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Department of Gastroenterology, Martini Ziekenhuis Groningen, The Netherlands.



The distribution of cardiovascular risk factors in patients with chronic gastrointestinal ischemia due to atherosclerosis of the splanchnic vessels (chronic splanchnic syndrome) is not well studied. The aim of this study was to determine the cardiovascular risk factor pattern in patients with chronic splanchnic syndrome.


From April 2003 to September 2007, atherosclerotic risk factors in consecutive patients with chronic splanchnic syndrome were compared prospectively with the general atherosclerotic risk profile in Western Europe and worldwide risk profile of coronary heart disease, peripheral artery disease, and cerebral vascular disease.


Of 376 analyzed patients, 97 were diagnosed with chronic splanchnic syndrome. Data from 90 patients were available for analysis (7 were excluded because of incomplete data). Mean age was 63 years (range 28-86 years), and 74% were female. Fifty-nine percent of the patients had atherosclerotic disease in other vascular beds. Smoking was reported in 57%, and increased bodyweight in 21%. Hypercholesterolemia was present in 53%, hypertension in 62%, and diabetes in 21%.


The atherosclerotic risk profile in patients with chronic splanchnic syndrome differed from other atherosclerotic diseases with a female preponderance, lower incidence of obesity/increased bodyweight, diabetes, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia. Reduced caloric intake, related to the postprandial pain, may explain the observed differences.

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