Indexed on: 01 Mar '18Published on: 01 Mar '18Published in: Cardiovascular journal of Africa
Traditional cardiovascular risk factors (CVRFs), which include age, gender, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, dyslipidaemia, smoking, alcohol consumption, chronic kidney disease and obesity, have been shown to be associated with atherosclerosis. We aimed to evaluate the impact of traditional CVRFs on carotid atherosclerosis (CA) in a sample of Nigerian adults. We examined 162 subjects with traditional CVRFs in a cross-sectional study. Demographic and clinical data, including history of hypertension, diabetes mellitus, smoking, alcohol intake and chronic kidney disease, as well as systolic and diastolic blood pressure, weight and height were collected. Serum creatinine, fasting blood glucose and lipid profiles were also determined. Carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) and presence of carotid plaque (CP) were evaluated by high-frequency B-mode ultrasound. Chi-squared and regression analyses were carried out to determine associations between variables of CIMT and CVRF. Increased CIMT was associated with all CVRFs (p < 0.05) except gender (p > 0.05), while CP was associated with older age, obesity, hypertension and dyslipidaemia (p < 0.05). We found prevalence of increased CIMT was 53.7%, while that of CP was 16.1%. The prevalence of CA (increased CIMT and CP) also increased with increasing number of CVRFs in the subjects. Age ≥ 50 years, hypertension, dyslipidaemia, obesity and alcohol intake explained 78.7% of variance in CIMT, while age ≥ 50 years and hypertension explained 38.0% of variance in CP. CA was associated with presence and increasing number of traditional CVRFs. A significant percentage of variance in CA was, however, unexplained by traditional CVRFs.