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Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 2014 Mar;96(2):121-6. doi: 10.1308/003588414X13814021676756.

Patterns of arteriosclerotic lesions of the lower extremity in a West Indian population based on angiographic findings and ethnicity.

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Port-of-Spain General Hospital, Trinidad and Tobago.



This study aimed to determine whether ethnic differences show different patterns of arterial disease in the lower limb.


A prospective analysis of 100 consecutive patients with 160 lower limb arteriograms was performed looking at the pattern of disease with relation to ethnicity in Trinidad and Tobago.


There were 53 male and 47 female patients with an age range of 43-90 years (mean: 66 years). Of the 100 patients, 45 were of East Indian descent, 36 of Afro-Caribbean descent, 14 of mixed descent and 5 had other backgrounds. There were 32 smokers and 69 diabetics. The most commonly affected artery in East Indians was the anterior tibial artery (ATA, 70%) followed by the peroneal artery (60%), superficial femoral artery (SFA, 60%), posterior tibial artery (PTA, 57%) and tibioperoneal trunk (TPT, 39%). In Afro-Caribbeans, the most commonly affected artery was the ATA (79%) followed by the PTA (74%), peroneal artery (66%) and TPT (55%). The mixed group showed the PTA (85%) to be most diseased followed by the peroneal artery (75%), ATA (70%), SFA (70%), dorsalis pedis artery (DPA, 60%) and TPT (50%). Overall, the most diseased vessel in all groups was the ATA (73%) followed by the PTA (66%), peroneal artery (64%), SFA (59%), TPT (46%), DPA (38%), popliteal artery (31%) and medial plantar artery (MPA, 29%), with the proximal vessels not being affected severely.


Ethnic divisions were only statistically significant (p<0.05) with East Indians showing worse disease in the profunda femoris artery and Afro-Caribbeans showing worse disease in the PTA, DPA and MPA. This suggests that environmental factors may play a significant role in the disease process including smoking and dietary factors rather than purely genetics.

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