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Salud Pública de México

Print version ISSN 0036-3634


CANTU-BRITO, Carlos et al. Cardiovascular risk factors and carotid atherosclerosis detected by ultrasonography. Salud pública Méx [online]. 1999, vol.41, n.6, pp.452-459. ISSN 0036-3634.

OBJECTIVES: To assess the frequency of carotid atherosclerosis and its relation to cardiovascular risk factors in a general elderly population of Mexico City. MATERIAL AND METHODS: B-mode ultrasonography was performed to investigate carotid atherosclerosis in 145 CUPA (a research project) participants, between July 1993 and January 1996. The outcome was then related to cardiovascular risk factors. RESULTS: Prevalence of ultrasound-detected carotid atherosclerosis was 64.8%. Intimal-medial thickening was detected in 64 subjects (44.1%) and carotid plaques in 82 (56.5%); Fifty-two subjects had both intimal-medial thickening and plaques. However, only 8 subjects had carotid plaques with severe stenosis (5.5%). There were no significant differences in the prevalence of atherosclerotic lesions (male 61.9%, female 66.0%). Carotid atherosclerosis was significantly associated with age (p<0.0001), high blood pressure (p<0.001), isolated systolic hypertension (p=0.01), hypercholesterolemia (p=0.04), and diabetes mellitus (p=0.06). Prevalence of carotid atherosclerosis increased progressively with the number of vascular risk factors. CONCLUSIONS: There was a high prevalence of carotid atherosclerosis in this general elderly population of Mexico City, and was almost equal to that reported in developed western countries. Age, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and diabetes were the strongest predictors of atherosclerosis.

Keywords : carotid atherosclerosis; cardiovascular diseases; risk factors; ultrasonography; Mexico.

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