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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 187-194

Initial progressions of carotid artery plaque are associated with risk factors of cardiovascular disease

1 Department of Neurosurgery, Edogawa Hospital, Tokyo, Japan
2 Department of Neurosurgery, International University Health and Welfare Graduate School, Tochigi, Japan

Correspondence Address:
Mami Ishikawa
Department of Neurosurgery, Edogawa Hospital, 2-24-18 Higashikoiwa, Edogawaku, Tokyo 133-0052
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JMU.JMU_107_20

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Background: Carotid artery plaque, white matter disease (WMD), and silent lacunae infarcts (initial indicators) are associated with symptomatic cerebral infarction (CI) caused by atherosclerosis. We retrospectively examined the association between the initial indicators and risk factors for cerebrovascular disease, considering the primary prevention of symptomatic CI. Methods: We divided 1503 individuals who were neurologically healthy and enrolled in a brain screening program (brain dock) at our institution, into three initial plaque grades (grade 0, 1, and 2) based on having no plaques, having plaques on the right or left carotid artery, or having plaques on both carotid arteries, respectively. We analyzed the risk factors according to the presence/absence of the initial indicators. Results: WMD and the risk factors (low-density lipoprotein [LDL], hemoglobin A1c, systolic blood pressure [BP], and smoking cigarettes) were positively correlated with the initial plaque grades, even when their laboratory values were within normal ranges. Systolic BP (116.5 ± 14.0 mmHg) was significantly lower in group 00 (without carotid plaque and WMD) than that in age-adjusted others (with carotid plaque or WMD). In young participants aged between 40 and 52 years, LDL (132.8 ± 24.5 mg/dl) was significantly higher in subgroup ++ (with carotid plaque and WMD) compared to others (without carotid plaque or WMD). Conclusion: Initial plaque grade and WMD grade as clinical initial indicators of symptomatic CI are associated with risk factors. To avoid deterioration of the initial indicators, it was suggested that the risk factors should be maintained at the lower ends of normal ranges and smoking cessation should be recommended.

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