From the Journals

Lower-limb atherosclerosis predicts long-term mortality in patients with PAD



The location and extent of lower limb atherosclerosis predicts long-term mortality in patients with peripheral arterial disease (PAD), according to the results of a retrospective cohort study performed in England.

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Foot ulceration caused by peripheral artery disease

Comprehensive infrainguinal arterial imaging that used duplex ultrasound to determine the overall and site-specific burden of atherosclerotic disease predicted long-term outcomes in this patient group, according to a report published online in the European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery.

“Not only does such imaging provide anatomical information to guide intervention, but it may also provide information to further risk-stratify patients with regard to long-term cardiovascular risk,” wrote Paul J.W. Tern, MD, of Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, England, and his colleagues.

A retrospective cohort study was performed on a consecutive series of 678 patients undergoing a lower limb arterial duplex scan during October 2009–June 2011 at Addenbrooke’s Hospital. Patients had a median age of 74 years and were followed for a median of 70 months.

A total of 307 patients died, which was the primary end point. Independent predictors of all-cause mortality included total Bollinger score (odds ratio, 1.11; P less than .001), femoropopliteal Bollinger score (OR, 1.34; P = .05); and crural Bollinger score (OR, 1.03; P = .03). The Bollinger score has been found to be a validated tool when used to determine overall lower limb atherosclerotic burden, the authors stated.

Dr. Tern and his colleagues also found that mortality was significantly associated with age, a history of ischemic heart disease, a history of congestive cardiac failure, and chronic renal failure (chronic kidney disease), although statin and antiplatelet therapy were found to be protective.

“This study has shown that infrainguinal atherosclerotic site and burden are independent predictors of poor outcome in patients; it is straightforward to determine and as such could be used to further risk stratify patients and influence the intensity of cardiovascular risk modification,” the researchers concluded.

The authors reported that they had no conflicts of interest.

SOURCE: Tern PJW et al. Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg. 2018 Oct 1. doi: 10.1016/j.ejvs.2018.07.020.

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