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A Journal on Heart and Vascular Diseases

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
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Minerva Cardioangiologica 1999 October;47(10):347-50

language: Italian

Carotid lesions and vascular risk factors

Lipari G., Benedetti S., Stefenelli N., Ghizzi M., Migliara B., Dellis C., Zardini C., Baggio E.


Background and aims. Recent studies have underlined a significant incidence of peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD) of the lower limbs in the general population which is often wrongly diagnosed. The ''classic'' risk factors‹like dyslipidemia‹are not always present in significant percentages in patients suffering from PAOD of the lower limbs. The aim of this study was to evaluate the incidence of the most common vascular risk factors (smoking, hypertension, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia) in patients suffering from stenosing lesions of the extracranial carotid axes, comparing the data with similar findings in lower limbs. Moreover, the authors evaluated the association between these risk factors, carotid atheromatous lesions and ischemic cardiomyopathy (CI).
Methods. A retrospective study was performed to evaluate the data from 1643 patients examined consecutively. A total of 636 (age >40, carotid stenosis >40%, presence of risk factors) were considered eligible.
Results. The results showed that, contrary to the findings in patients suffering from PAOD, diabetes was not among the most frequently associated risk factors, whereas a relatively large number of patients had a history of smoking, including both smokers and ex-smokers.
Conclusions. The difference in the most frequent risk factors identified for PAOD and carotid lesions suggests different etiopathogenetic mechanisms for the two districts.

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