Carotid Intima-Media Thickness, Systemic Inflammation, and Incidence of Heart Failure Hospitalizations.
Summary, in English
OBJECTIVE: This study explored the relationships between carotid intima-media thickness (IMT), plasma levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), and incidence of heart failure hospitalizations. METHODS AND RESULTS: Men and women from the general population (n=4691), without history of myocardial infarction or stroke, were examined. Incidence of hospitalizations attributable to heart failure was studied over a mean follow-up of 13 years. A total of 75 subjects were hospitalized with a primary diagnosis of heart failure. Adjusted for risk factors, the hazards ratios (95% CI) were 1.00, 0.98 (0.36 to 2.7), 1.9 (0.80 to 4.6), and 2.7 (1.1 to 6.2), respectively, for the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quartiles of IMT (P for trend=0.003). The HR associated with CRP levels >/=3 mg/L (versus <1 mg/L) was 2.0 (95% CI: 1.06 to 3.9) after adjustments for risk factors. There was a significant interaction between IMT and CRP on heart failure incidence (P=0.028). Subjects with CRP >/=3 mg/L and IMT in the 4th quartile had an adjusted HR of 3.7 (1.9 to 7.1) compared to those with CRP <3 mg/L and IMT in quartile 1 to 3. CONCLUSIONS: High IMT and high CRP are both independent risk factors for incidence of heart failure requiring hospitalization. The joint exposure to both risk factors substantially increases the risk.