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PLoS One. 2018 Jul 20;13(7):e0201062. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0201062. eCollection 2018.

Non-cardioembolic risk factors in atrial fibrillation-associated ischemic stroke.

Author information

1
Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Yonsei University Health System, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
2
Department of Neurology, Yonsei University Health System, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Cardioembolic (CE) risks is usually considered as the main mechanism of ischemic stroke in non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) patients. However, a substantial number of ischemic strokes in NVAF patients are related to non-CE mechanisms. The aim of this study was to investigate the non-CE risk factors in ischemic stroke patients had NVAF.

METHODS:

We included 401 patients (65.6% male, 68.6 ± 9.6 years old) who had been hospitalized due to ischemic stroke and had a known or newly diagnosed NVAF. The CE (intracardiac thrombus, dense spontaneous echo contrast, or low left atrial appendage flow velocity) and non-CE (complex aortic plaque, significant carotid stenosis, or intracranial arterial stenosis) risk factors were investigated at the time of the index stroke.

RESULTS:

The number of CE and non-CE risk factors increased with increasing CHA2DS2-VASc scores (p for trends < 0.001). The presence of CE risk factors was independently associated with persistent atrial fibrillation (p < 0.001), body mass index (p = 0.003), heart failure (p = 0.003), and left atrial volume index (p < 0.001). In contrast, the presence of non-CE risk factors was independently associated with age (p < 0.001), hypertension (p = 0.049), diabetes (p = 0.030), and coronary artery calcium score (CACS; p < 0.001). CACS had the added value in predicting non-CE risk factors of ischemic stroke regardless of the CHA2DS2-VASc risk category (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION:

Non-CE risk factors in ischemic stroke patients with NVAF are associated with high CHA2DS2-VASc score and CACS. Atherosclerotic non-CE risk factors should be considered as potential mechanisms of stroke even in patients with AF-associated ischemic stroke.

PMID:
30028885
PMCID:
PMC6054400
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0201062
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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