Conference Coverage

AHA: One in three black Americans will experience PAD




ORLANDO – One in three black Americans and one in five whites and Hispanics will develop lower extremity peripheral artery disease during their lifetime, according to the first-ever lifetime risk estimate calculated for this important manifestation of atherosclerotic vascular disease.

“Our results suggest that race is a critical factor in PAD [peripheral artery disease] risk. Current clinical guidelines recommend measuring ankle-brachial index according to age, traditional cardiovascular risk factors, and leg symptoms. Our results suggest race should also be taken into account,” Dr. Kunihiro Matsushita said at the American Heart Association scientific sessions.

This lifetime risk estimate for PAD was derived from national prevalence and mortality data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and the National Vital Statistics System. The analytic methods employed have previously been used to estimate lifetime risk of kidney disease and other major health issues with significant impact upon quality of life and longevity, noted Dr. Matsushita of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore.

Over an 80-year time horizon, the projected risk of experiencing PAD was similar for men and women of the same race, but 1.5-fold higher for blacks, compared with whites or Hispanics (see chart).

An estimated 10% of black Americans will develop PAD by age 60. Among whites and Hispanics, a 10% prevalence is not reached until age 70. For individuals who don’t have PAD by age 65, their risk during the next 15 years is in the range of 28%-30% for black men and women, and 16%-18% in white or Hispanic men and women, according to Dr. Matsushita.

He declared having no financial conflicts related to this study. His work is supported by an AHA award.

Next Article: