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A Journal on Angiology

Official Journal of the International Union of Angiology, the International Union of Phlebology and the Central European Vascular Forum
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Original articles  

International Angiology 2006 March;25(1):18-25


language: English

Gender differences in cardiovascular risk factors in a carotid endarterectomy population

Debing E., Von Kemp K., Van Den Brande P.

Department of Vascular Surgery, Academic Hospital, Free University Brussels, Brussels, Belgium


Aim. Present knowledge about the epidemiology and the distribution of the cardiovascular risk factors of carotid artery atherosclerosis is limited. The aim of the study was to detect possible gender differences in cardiovascular risk factors in carotid endarterectomy patients.
Methods. Between 1998 and 2003 the cardiovascular risk factors of 804 consecutive isolated carotid endarterectomies were prospectively recorded. The data of 567 men and 237 women were compared and subgroup analysis of young and old male and female subjects was performed.
Results. The number of cardiovascular risk factors per patient is higher in men, hypertension is more predominant in women, tobacco use is twice as often present in men. The most frequent risk factors are, in men, tobacco use and hypertension, and, in women, hypertension and hyperlipidemia. The most frequent combination in the male group is tobacco/hypertension/hyperlipidemia and in the female group hypertension/hyperlipidemia. The gender differences were more striking in patients younger than 75 years, after this age the number of cardiovascular risk factor per patient declined in both sexes, the number of smokers decreased but remains higher in men, diabetes is more frequent in women and hypertension and hyperlipidemia become the important risk factors in men as well in women.
Conclusion. There are gender differences in the distribution and in the combinations of cardiovascular risk factors in our selected patients. These findings suggest that screening for carotid artery atherosclerosis should particularly be aimed at people with the combinations of risk factors described above.

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