Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a prognostic marker in cardiovascular disease. The use of Doppler-measured ankle-brachial pressure index (Dop-ABI) for PAD diagnosis is limited because of time, required training, and costs. We assessed automated oscillometric measurement of the ankle-brachial pressure index (Osc-ABI) by nurses and clinical staff.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Clinical staff obtained Osc-ABI with an automated oscillometric device in 146 patients (83 with diabetes) at the time of Dop-ABI measurement and ultrasound evaluation.
Measurements were obtained in most legs (Dop-ABI 98%; Osc-ABI 95.5%). Dop- and Osc-ABI were significantly related in diabetic and nondiabetic patients with good agreement over a wide range of values. When Dop-ABI ≤0.90 was used as the gold standard for PAD, receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that PAD was accurately diagnosed with Osc-ABI in diabetic patients. When ultrasound was used to define PAD, Dop-ABI had better diagnostic performance than Osc-ABI in the whole population and in diabetic patients (P = 0.026). Both methods gave similar results in nondiabetic patients. The cutoff values for the highest sensitivity and specificity for PAD screening were between 1.0 and 1.1. Estimation of cost with the French medical care system fees showed a potential reduction by three of the screening procedures.
PAD screening could be improved by using Osc-ABI measured by clinical staff with the benefit of greater cost-effectiveness but at the risk of lower diagnostic performance in diabetic patients.
The ankle brachial index (ABI) is a well-established tool for screening and diagnosis of peripheral arterial disease (PAD). In this study we assessed the validity of ABI determination using a pocket Doppler device compared with automatic vascular laboratory measurement in patients suspected of PAD.
Consecutive patients with symptoms of PAD referred for ABI measurement between December 2006 and August 2007 were included. Resting ABI was determined with a pocket Doppler, followed by ABI measurement with automatic vascular laboratory equipment, performed by an experienced vascular technician. The leg with the lowest ABI was used for analysis.
From 99 patients the mean resting ABI was 0.80 measured with the pocket Doppler and 0.85 measured with vascular laboratory equipment. A Bland-Altman plot demonstrated great correspondence between the two methods. The mean difference between the two methods was 0.05 (P < .001). Multivariate linear regression analysis showed no dependency of the difference on either the average measured ABI or affected or unaffected leg.
Since the small, albeit statistically significant, difference between the two methods is not clinically relevant, our study demonstrates that ABI measurements with pocket Doppler and vascular laboratory equipment yield comparable results and can replace each other. Results support the use of the pocket Doppler for screening of PAD, allowing initiation of cardiovascular risk factor management in primary care, provided that the equipment operator is experienced.
Peripheral arterial disease is a coronary risk equivalent; a low ankle-brachial index (ABI) is indicative of systemic vascular disease, and should place a patient in the high-risk category. Few physicians measure ABI because it is technically challenging and time consuming. Oscillometric blood pressure monitors are readily available and easy to use. The use of a simple method of documenting ABI was assessed and compared with the conventional method.
The oscillometric ABI (OABI) was measured for normal volunteers, patients attending a cardiovascular risk clinic (Cardiovascular Risk Factor Reduction Unit [CRFRU] at the University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon) and patients referred to a vascular laboratory (vasc lab). The latter group had Doppler ABI (DABI) measurements and served to validate OABI. An Omron HEM 711C oscillometric system (Omron Canada Inc) with appropriate cuff size for arm and leg circumference was used.
The mean ± SEM OABI was 1.13±0.08 in normal volunteers (n=26), 1.10±0.10 in CRFRU patients (n=11, P not significant) and 1.03±0.14 in vasc lab patients (n=57, P<0.05 compared with normal volunteers). No difference was found between sexes, and there was no correlation with age. In the vasc lab group, the correlation with DABI was 0.71 (P<0.05). The sensitivity of OABI to detect DABI of less than 0.9 was 0.71, and the specificity was 0.89. OABI was found to be less sensitive at detecting low values in patients with nonpalpable pulses on physical examination.
The OABI is feasible and operator-independent, but does not detect low ABI efficiently. If OABI is abnormal, low DABI is likely. The OABI is less likely to detect disease in patients with nonpalpable peripheral pulses. Such patients are better referred directly to a vascular laboratory for DABI testing.
Ankle-brachial index; Atherosclerosis; Diagnosis; Peripheral vascular disease; Risk factors
The ankle brachial pressure index (ABI) is a simple, useful method for diagnosing peripheral artery disease (PAD). Although the ABI is an objective diagnostic method, it has limited reliability in certain scenarios. The aim of the present study was to determine the accuracy and reliability of the toe brachial index (TBI) as a diagnostic tool for detecting stenosis in PAD, associated with normal or low ABI values.
ABI and TBI values were measured in 15 patients with diabetic gangrene who were suspected of having lower extremity arterial insufficiency. The ABI and TBI values were measured using a device that allowed the simultaneous measurement of systolic blood pressure in the upper and lower extremities. In addition, the ABI and TBI values were compared pre- and post-angiography.
Patients with an ABI of 0.9-1.3 showed almost no difference between the 2 measurements. The patients with TBI >0.6 had no arterial insufficiency. The patients with TBI <0.6 required vascular intervention with ballooning. After the angiography, the gangrenous wounds decreased in size more rapidly than they did prior to the intervention.
Our findings suggest that TBI is the method of choice for evaluating lower limb perfusion disorders. This result requires further studies of TBI in a larger number of patients. Future long-term studies should therefore evaluate the utility of TBI as a means of screening for PAD and the present findings should be regarded as preliminary outcomes.
Toe brachial index; Ankle brachial index; Peripheral arterial disease
Systolic time interval (STI) is an established noninvasive technique for the assessment of cardiac function. Brachial STIs can be automatically determined by an ankle-brachial index (ABI)-form device. The aims of this study are to evaluate whether the STIs measured from ABI-form device can represent those measured from echocardiography and to compare the diagnostic values of brachial and echocardiographic STIs in the prediction of left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) <50%. A total of 849 patients were included in the study. Brachial pre-ejection period (bPEP) and brachial ejection time (bET) were measured using an ABI-form device and pre-ejection period (PEP) and ejection time (ET) were measured from echocardiography. Agreement was assessed by correlation coefficient and Bland-Altman plot. Brachial STIs had a significant correlation with echocardiographic STIs (r = 0.644, P<0.001 for bPEP and PEP; r = 0.850, P<0.001 for bET and ET; r = 0.708, P<0.001 for bPEP/bET and PEP/ET). The disagreement between brachial and echocardiographic STIs (brachial STIs minus echocardiographic STIs) was 28.55 ms for bPEP and PEP, -4.15 ms for bET and ET and -0.11 for bPEP/bET and PEP/ET. The areas under the curve for bPEP/bET and PEP/ET in the prediction of LVEF <50% were 0.771 and 0.765, respectively. Brachial STIs were good alternatives to STIs obtained from echocardiography and also helpful in prediction of LVEF <50%. Brachial STIs automatically obtained from an ABI-form device may be helpful for evaluation of left ventricular systolic dysfunction.
A low ankle-brachial index (ABI) is associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and death. Regression model parameter estimates may be biased due to measurement error when the ABI is included as a predictor in regression models, but may be corrected if the reliability coefficient, R, is known. The R for the ABI computed from DINAMAP™ readings of the ankle and brachial SBP is not known.
A total of 119 participants in both the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study and the NHLBI Family Heart Study (FHS) had repeat ABIs taken within 1 year, using a common protocol, automated oscillometric blood pressure measurement devices, and technician pool.
The estimated reliability coefficient for the ankle systolic blood pressure (SBP) was 0.68 (95% CI: 0.57, 0.77) and for the brachial SBP was 0.74 (95% CI: 0.62, 0.83). The reliability for the ABI based on single ankle and arm SBPs was 0.61 (95% CI: 0.50, 0.70) and the reliability of the ABI computed as the ratio of the average of two ankle SBPs to two arm SBPs was estimated from simulated data as 0.70.
These reliability estimates may be used to obtain unbiased parameter estimates if the ABI is included in regression models. Our results suggest the need for repeated measures of the ABI in clinical practice, preferably within visits and also over time, before diagnosing peripheral artery disease and before making therapeutic decisions.
Ankle-brachial index (ABI) can access peripheral artery disease and predict mortality in prevalent patients on hemodialysis. However, ABI has not yet been tested in incident patients, who present significant mortality. Typically, ABI is measured by Doppler, which is not always available, limiting its use in most patients. We therefore hypothesized that ABI, evaluated by a simplified method, can predict mortality in an incident hemodialysis population.
We studied 119 patients with ESRD who had started hemodialysis three times weekly. ABI was calculated by using two oscillometric blood pressure devices simultaneously. Patients were followed until death or the end of the study. ABI was categorized in two groups normal (0.9–1.3) or abnormal (<0.9 and >1.3). There were 33 deaths during a median follow-up of 12 months (from 3 to 24 months). Age (1 year) (hazard of ratio, 1.026; p = 0.014) and ABI abnormal (hazard ratio, 3.664; p = 0.001) were independently related to mortality in a multiple regression analysis.
An easy and inexpensive technique to measure ABI was tested and showed to be significant in predicting mortality. Both low and high ABI were associated to mortality in incident patients on hemodialysis. This technique allows nephrologists to identify high-risk patients and gives the opportunity of early intervention that could alter the natural progression of this population.
The reference standard for diagnosing peripheral arterial disease in primary care is the ankle brachial index (ABI). Various methods to measure ankle and brachial blood pressures and to calculate the index are described.
To compare the ABI measurements performed in primary care with those performed in the vascular laboratory. Furthermore, an inventory was made of methods used to determine the ABI in primary care.
Design of study
Primary care practice and outpatient clinic.
Consecutive patients suspected of peripheral arterial disease based on ABI assessment in primary care practices were included. The ABI measurements were repeated in the vascular laboratory. Referring GPs were interviewed about method of measurement and calculation of the index. From each patient the leg with the lower ABI was used for analysis.
Ninety-nine patients of 45 primary care practices with a mean ABI of 0.80 (standard deviation [SD] = 0.27) were included. The mean ABI as measured in the vascular laboratory was 0.82 (SD = 0.26). A Bland–Altman plot demonstrated great variability between ABI measurements in primary care practice and the vascular laboratory. Both method of blood pressure measurements and method of calculating the ABI differed greatly between primary care practices.
This study demonstrates that the ABI is often not correctly determined in primary care practice. This phenomenon seems to be due to inaccurate methods for both blood pressure measurements and calculation of the index. A guideline for determining the ABI with a hand-held Doppler, and a training programme seem necessary.
diagnosis; Doppler effect; intermittent claudication; peripheral vascular diseases; ultrasonography
The authors aimed to determine differences in the prevalence of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and its associations with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors, using different methods of calculating the ankle-brachial index (ABI). Using measurements taken in the bilateral brachial, dorsalis pedis, and posterior tibial arteries, the authors calculated ABI in 3 ways: 1) with the lowest ankle pressure (dorsalis pedis artery or posterior tibial artery) (“ABI-LO”), 2) with the highest ankle pressure (“ABI-HI”), and 3) with the mean of the ankle pressures (“ABI-MN”). For all 3 methods, the index ABI was the lower of the ABIs calculated from the left and right legs. PAD was defined as an ABI less than 0.90. Among 6,590 subjects from a multiethnic cohort (baseline examination: 2000–2002), in comparison with ABI-HI, the relative prevalence of PAD was 3.95 times higher in women and 2.74 times higher in men when ABI-LO was used. The relative magnitudes of the associations were largest between PAD and both subclinical atherosclerosis and CVD risk factors when ABI-HI was used, except when risk estimates for PAD were less than 1.0, where the largest relative magnitudes of association were found using ABI-LO. PAD prevalence and its associations with CVD risk factors and subclinical atherosclerosis measures depend on the ankle pressure used to compute the ABI.
ankle brachial index; cardiovascular diseases; continental population groups; ethnic groups; peripheral vascular diseases
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) generally remains under-recognized, mainly due to the specialized technical skills required to detect the low values of the ankle-brachial index (ABI). As a simpler and faster alternative to the standard method using continuous-wave Doppler ultrasound, we evaluated automated oscillometric ABI measurement by VP-2000 with an elderly cohort of 113 subjects (age range, 61 to 88 years). The standard deviation in ABIs measured by the Doppler method was statistically greater than that measured by the oscillometric method for each of the two legs (P < 0.001). Correlations in ABIs between the two methods were 0.46 for the left leg and 0.61 for the right leg; this result appears to have been caused by interobserver variation in the Doppler ABI measurements. While the trend showing greater differences between average oscillometric- and Doppler-ABIs was significant at the lower ABI ranges, there was little indication of differences in measurements having an average ABI > 1.1. The difference between the methods was suggestively larger in subjects who were smokers than in non-smokers (P = 0.09), but the difference was not affected by other potential atherosclerotic risk factors, including age at examination (P > 0.50). A larger difference at lower ABIs led to better PAD detection by the Doppler method compared to the oscillometric method (sensitivity = 50%, specificity = 100%), although the overall agreement was not small (Cohen’s Kappa = 0.65). Our findings indicate that oscillometric devices can provide more accurate estimation of the prevalence of PAD in elderly individuals than the conventional Doppler method.
ankle-brachial index; oscillometry; Doppler; peripheral arterial disease
Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) remains the least recognized form of atherosclerosis. The Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) has emerged as one of the potent markers of diffuse atherosclerosis, cardiovascular (CV) risk, and overall survival in general public, especially in diabetics. The important reason for the lack of early diagnosis is the non-availability of a test that is easy to perform and less expensive, with no training required.
To evaluate the osillometric method of performing ABI with regard to its usefulness in detecting PAD cases and to correlate the signs and symptoms with ABI.
Materials and Methods:
Two hundred diabetics of varying duration attending the clinic for a period of eight months, from August 2006 to April 2007, were evaluated for signs, symptoms, and risk factors. ABI was performed using the oscillometric method. The positives were confirmed by Doppler evaluation. An equal number of age- and sex-matched controls, which were ABI negative, were also assessed by Doppler. Sensitivity and Specificity were determined.
There were 120 males and 80 females. Twelve males (10%) and six females (7.5%) were ABI positive. On Doppler, eleven males (91.5%) and three females (50%) were true positives. There were six false negatives from the controls (three each). The Sensitivity was 70% and Specificity was 75%. Symptoms and signs correlated well with ABI positives. Hypertension was the most important risk factor.
In spite of the limitations, the oscillometric method of performing ABI is a simple procedure, easy to perform, does not require training and can be performed as an outpatient procedure not only by doctors, but also by the paramedical staff to detect more PAD cases.
Ankle-Brachial Index; oscillometric method; PAD; risk factors; sensitivity; specificity
The ankle brachial index (ABI) is an objective diagnostic tool that is widely used for the diagnosis of peripheral arterial disease. Despite its usefulness, it is evident within the literature that many practitioners forgo using this screening tool due to limiting factors such as time. There is also no recommended technique for ABI measurement. The purpose of this study is to investigate the perceptions of the use of ABI clinically among Western Australian podiatrists.
This study was a cross sectional survey which evaluated the perceptions of the ABI amongst registered podiatrists in Western Australia. The study sample was obtained from the register of podiatrists listed with the Podiatrists Registration Board of Western Australia. Podiatrists were contacted by telephone and invited to participate in a telephone questionnaire. Chi-square tests were performed to determine if there was a statistically significant relationship between use of the ABI and podiatrists’ profile which included: sector of employment; geographical location; and length of time in practice.
There is a statistically significant relationship (p=0.004) between podiatrists’ profile and the use of ABI, with higher usage in the tertiary hospital setting than in private practice. Length of time spent in practice had no significant impact on ABI usage (p=0.098). Time constraints and lack of equipment were key limiting factors to performing the ABI, and no preferred technique was indicated.
Western Australian podiatrists agree that the ABI is a useful tool for lower limb vascular assessment, however, various factors influence uptake in the clinical setting. This study suggests that a podiatrists’ profile has a significant influence on the use of the ABI, which may be attributed to different patient types across the various settings. The influence of time spent in practice on ABI usage may be attributed to differences in clinical training and awareness of lower limb pathology over time. The authors recommend publication of ‘best practice’ guidelines to ABI performance, as well as further education and financial rebates from health organizations to facilitate increased utility of the ABI based on the findings of this study.
Impaired functional capacity predicts morbidity and increased mortality in patients with PAD. We hypothesized that brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV), a measure of arterial stiffness, is associated with functional capacity in patients undergoing noninvasive evaluation for peripheral arterial disease (PAD).
We studied 114 patients (age 68 ± 10 years) referred to Mayo Clinic’s noninvasive vascular laboratory. Functional capacity was estimated in terms of distance walked in 5 min on a treadmill at a speed of 1.0–2.0 mph. Ankle-brachial index (ABI) was obtained with Doppler method before and 1 min after exercise. baPWV was estimated noninvasively using an oscillometric device. The association of baPWV with walking distance was assessed using accelerated failure time and Cox proportional-hazards models.
The mean baPWV was higher in patients who were unable to complete the walk test compared to those who successfully completed the test (P = 0.008). Higher baPWV was associated with a lower walking distance after adjustment for heart rate, mean arterial pressure, and cardiovascular risk factors (P = 0.017) and after additional adjustment for pulse pressure (P = 0.034) and ABI (P = 0.030). Higher baPWV was associated with failure to complete the treadmill walk test, after adjustment for heart rate, mean arterial pressure, and cardiovascular risk factors (P = 0.025) and after additional adjustment for pulse pressure (P = 0.041) and ABI (P = 0.039).
Increased baPWV, a measure of arterial stiffness, is associated with impaired functional capacity in patients undergoing evaluation for PAD.
Arterial stiffness; Brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity; Functional capacity; Peripheral arterial disease
The ankle brachial index (ABI) is an efficient tool for objectively documenting the presence of lower extremity peripheral arterial disease (PAD). However, different methods exist for ABI calculation, which might result in varying PAD prevalence estimates. To address this question, we compared five different methods of ABI calculation using Doppler ultrasound in 6,880 consecutive, unselected primary care patients ≥65 years in the observational getABI study.
In all calculations, the average systolic pressure of the right and left brachial artery was used as the denominator (however, in case of discrepancies of ≥10 mmHg, the higher reading was used). As nominators, the following pressures were used: the highest arterial ankle pressure of each leg (method #1), the lowest pressure (#2), only the systolic pressure of the tibial posterior artery (#3), only the systolic pressure of the tibial anterior artery (#4), and the systolic pressure of the tibial posterior artery after exercise (#5). An ABI < 0.9 was regarded as evidence of PAD.
The estimated prevalence of PAD was lowest using method #1 (18.0%) and highest using method #2 (34.5%), while the differences in methods #3–#5 were less pronounced. Method #1 resulted in the most accurate estimation of PAD prevalence in the general population. Using the different approaches, the odds ratio for the association of PAD and cardiovascular (CV) events varied between 1.7 and 2.2.
The data demonstrate that different methods for ABI determination clearly affect the estimation of PAD prevalence, but not substantially the strength of the associations between PAD and CV events. Nonetheless, to achieve improved comparability among different studies, one mode of calculation should be universally applied, preferentially method #1.
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is common in older people. An ankle-brachial index (ABI) < 0.9 can be used as an indicator of PAD. Patients with low ABI have increased mortality and a higher risk of serious cardiovascular morbidity. However, because 80% of the patients are asymptomatic, PAD remains unrecognised in a large group of patients. The aims of this study were 1) to examine the prevalence of reduced ABI in subjects aged 80 and over, 2) to determine the diagnostic accuracy of the medical history and clinical examination for reduced ABI and 3) to investigate the difference in functioning and physical activity between patients with and without reduced ABI.
A cross-sectional study embedded within the BELFRAIL study. A general practitioner (GP) centre, located in Hoeilaart, Belgium, recruited 239 patients aged 80 or older. Only three criteria for exclusion were used: urgent medical need, palliative situation and known serious dementia. The GP recorded the medical history and performed a clinical examination. The clinical research assistant performed an extensive examination including Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-15), Activities of Daily Living (ADL), Tinetti test and the LASA Physical Activity Questionnaire (LAPAQ). ABI was measured using an automatic oscillometric appliance.
In 40% of patients, a reduced ABI was found. Cardiovascular risk factors were unable to identify patients with low ABI. A negative correlation was found between the number of cardiovascular morbidities and ABI. Cardiovascular morbidity had a sensitivity of 65.7% (95% CI 53.4-76.7) and a specificity of 48.6% (95% CI 38.7-58.5). Palpation of the peripheral arteries showed the highest negative predictive value (77.7% (95% CI 71.8-82.9)). The LAPAQ score was significantly lower in the group with reduced ABI.
The prevalence of PAD is very high in patients aged 80 and over in general practice. The clinical examination, cardiovascular risk factors and the presence of cardiovascular morbidity were not able to identify patients with a low ABI. A screening strategy for PAD by determining ABI could be considered if effective interventions for those aged 80 and over with a low ABI become available through future research.
The current study aims to determine the relation between ankle–brachial index (ABI) and angiographic findings and major cardiovascular risk factors in patients with suspected coronary artery diseases (CAD) in Isfahan.
In this cross-sectional descriptive-analytic research, patients with suspected CAD were studied. Characteristics of studied subjects including demographics, familial history, past medical history and atherosclerotic risk factors such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, hyperlipidemia and smoking were obtained using a standard questionnaire. ABI was measured in all studied patients. ABI≤0.9 (ABI+) was considered as peripheral vessel disease and ABI>0.9 (ABI-) was considered as normal. Then, all studied patients underwent coronary artery angiography. The results of the questionnaire and angiographic findings were compared in ABI+ and ABI- groups. Data were analyzed by SPSS 15 using ANOVA, t-test, Spearman's rank correlation coefficient, and discriminant analysis.
In this study, 125 patients were investigated. ABI≤0.9 was seen in 25 patients (20%). The prevalence of ABI+ among men and women was 25.9% and 7.5%, respectively (P=0.01). The prevalence of atherosclerotic risk factors was significantly higher in ABI+ patients than in ABI- ones (P<0.05). ABI+ patients had more significant stenosis than ABI- ones. The mean of occlusion was significantly higher in ABI+ patients with left main artery (LMA), right coronary artery (RCA), left anterior descending artery (LAD), diagonal artery 1 (D1) and left circumflex artery (LCX) involvements (P<0.05).
The findings of this research indicated that ABI could be a useful method in assessing both the atherosclerotic risk factors and the degree of coronary involvements in suspected patients. However, in order to make more accurate decisions for using this method in diagnosing and preventing CAD, we should plan further studies in large sample sizes of general population.
Ankle–Brachial Index; Angiography; Atherosclerotic Risk Factors.
An interarm systolic blood pressure (SBP) difference of 10 mmHg or more have been associated with peripheral artery disease and adverse cardiovascular outcomes. We investigated whether an association exists between this difference and ankle-brachial index (ABI), brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV), and echocardiographic parameters. A total of 1120 patients were included in the study. The bilateral arm blood pressures were measured simultaneously by an ABI-form device. The values of ABI and baPWV were also obtained from the same device. Clinical data, ABI<0.9, baPWV, echocariographic parameters, and an interarm SBP difference ≥10 mmHg were compared and analyzed. We performed two multivariate forward analyses for determining the factors associated with an interarm SBP difference ≥10 mmHg [model 1: significant variables in univariate analysis except left ventricular mass index (LVMI); model 2: significant variables in univariate analysis except ABI<0.9 and baPWV]. The ABI<0.9 and high baPWV in model 1 and high LVMI in model 2 were independently associated with an interarm SBP difference ≥10 mmHg. Female, hypertension, and high body mass index were also associated with an interarm SBP difference ≥10 mmHg. Our study demonstrated that ABI<0.9, high baPWV, and high LVMI were independently associated with an interarm SBP difference of 10 mmHg or more. Detection of an interarm SBP difference may provide a simple method of detecting patients at increased risk of atherosclerosis and left ventricular hypertrophy.
The diagnosis of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) can be made by measuring the ankle–brachial index (ABI). Traditionally ABI values > 1.00–1.40 have been considered normal and ABI ≤ 0.90 defines PAD. Recent studies, however, have shown that individuals with ABI values between 0.90–1.00 are also at risk of cardiovascular events. We studied this cardiovascular risk population subgroup in order to determine their endothelial function using peripheral arterial tonometry (PAT).
We selected 66 individuals with cardiovascular risk and borderline ABI. They all had hypertension, newly diagnosed glucose disorder, metabolic syndrome, obesity, or a ten year risk of cardiovascular disease death of 5% or more according to the Systematic Coronary Risk Evaluation System (SCORE). Subjects with previously diagnosed diabetes or cardiovascular disease were excluded. Endothelial function was assessed by measuring the reactive hyperemia index (RHI) from fingertips using an Endo-PAT device.
The mean ABI was 0.95 and mean RHI 2.11. Endothelial dysfunction, defined as RHI < 1.67, was detected in 15/66 (23%) of the subjects. There were no statistically significant differences in RHI values between subjects with different cardiovascular risk factors. The only exception was that subjects with impaired fasting glucose (IFG) had slightly lower RHI values (mean RHI 1.91) than subjects without IFG (mean RHI 2.24) (P = 0.02).
In a cardiovascular risk population with borderline ABI nearly every fourth subject had endothelial dysfunction, indicating an elevated risk of cardiovascular events. This might point out a subgroup of individuals in need of more aggressive treatment for their risk factors.
peripheral arterial disease; ankle–brachial index; cardiovascular risk; endothelial dysfunction
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) often hinders the cardiac rehabilitation program. The aim of this study was evaluating the relative cost-effectiveness of new rehabilitation strategies which include the diagnosis and treatment of PAD in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) undergoing cardiac rehabilitation.
Best-available evidence was retrieved from literature and combined with primary data from 231 patients.
We developed a Markov decision model to compare the following treatment strategies: 1. cardiac rehabilitation only; 2. ankle-brachial index (ABI) if cardiac rehabilitation fails followed by diagnostic work-up and revascularization for PAD if needed; 3. ABI prior to cardiac rehabilitation followed by diagnostic work-up and revascularization for PAD if needed. Quality-adjusted-life years (QALYs), life-time costs (US $), incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICER), and gain in net health benefits (NHB) in QALY equivalents were calculated. A threshold willingness-to-pay of $75 000 was used.
ABI if cardiac rehabilitation fails was the most favorable strategy with an ICER of $44 251 per QALY gained and an incremental NHB compared to cardiac rehabilitation only of 0.03 QALYs (95% CI: −0.17, 0.29) at a threshold willingness-to-pay of $75 000/QALY. After sensitivity analysis, a combined cardiac and vascular rehabilitation program increased the success rate and would dominate the other two strategies with total lifetime costs of $30 246 a quality-adjusted life expectancy of 3.84 years, and an incremental NHB of 0.06 QALYs (95%CI:−0.24, 0.46) compared to current practice. The results were robust for other different input parameters.
ABI measurement if cardiac rehabilitation fails followed by a diagnostic work-up and revascularization for PAD if needed are potentially cost-effective compared to cardiac rehabilitation only.
We determined whether lower extremity ischemia, as measured by the ankle brachial index (ABI), is associated with impaired lower extremity nerve function.
Participants included 478 persons with peripheral arterial disease (PAD) identified from noninvasive vascular laboratories and 292 persons without PAD identified from a general medicine practice and noninvasive vascular laboratories. Peripheral arterial disease was defined as an ABI lower than 0.90 (mild PAD: ABI, 0.70 to <0.90; moderate PAD: ABI, 0.50 to <0.70; and severe PAD: ABI, <0.50). The ABI and electrophysiologic measures of the peroneal, sural, and ulnar nerves were obtained.
Among 546 participants without diabetes, PAD participants had significantly impaired peripheral nerve function in the upper and lower extremities compared with non-PAD participants. After adjusting for age, sex, race, smoking, height, body mass index, recruitment source, alcohol use, disk disease, spinal stenosis, cardiac disease, and cerebrovascular disease, these associations were not statistically significant. After adjusting for confounders among nondiabetic participants, those with severe PAD (ABI, <0.50) had poorer peroneal nerve conduction velocity (NCV) compared with participants without PAD (42.6 vs 44.8 m/s; P=.003) and poorer peroneal NCV compared with participants with mild PAD (42.6 vs 45.0 m/s; P=.001) or moderate PAD (42.6 vs 44.1 m/s; P=.03). Among 224 participants with diabetes, after adjusting for confounders, PAD was associated with poorer peroneal NCV (40.8 vs 43.5 m/s; P=.01), sural nerve amplitude (3.1 vs 4.8 μV; P=.045), and ulnar NCV (47.6 vs 50.2 m/s; P=.03) compared with those without PAD.
Our findings suggest that leg ischemia impairs peroneal nerve function. This association is less strong in patients with diabetes, perhaps because of the overriding influence of diabetes on peripheral nerve function. Clinicians should consider screening for PAD in patients with idiopathic peroneal nerve dysfunction. Peripheral arterial disease–associated nerve dysfunction may contribute to PAD-associated functional impairment.
Inappropriate left ventricular mass index (LVM) may develop as a response to particular hemodynamic and metabolic alterations. Inappropriate LVM and peripheral artery disease (PAD) characterized by abnormally low or high ankle-brachial index (ABI) are common in chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients, in whom there may be a close and cause-effect relationship. The aim of this study is to assess whether CKD and abnormal ABI has an independent and additive association with inappropriate LVM. A total of 1110 patients were included in the study. Inappropriate LVM was defined as observed LVM more than 28% of the predicted value. The ABI was measured using an ABI-form device. PAD was defined as ABI <0.9 or >1.3 in either leg. Multivariate analysis showed that patients with estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) <45 ml/min/1.73 m2 (odds ratio [OR], 1.644; P = 0.011) and PAD (OR, 2.082; P = 0.002) were independently associated with inappropriate LVM. The interaction between eGFR <45 ml/min/1.73 m2 and PAD on inappropriate LVM was statistically significant (P = 0.044). Besides, eGFR<45 ml/min/1.73 m2 (change in observed/predicted LVM, 19.949; P<0.001) and PAD (change in observed/predicted LVM, 11.818; P = 0.003) were also significantly associated with observed/predicted LVM. Our findings show that eGFR <45 ml/min/1.73 m2 and PAD are independently and additively associated with inappropriate LVM and observed/predicted LVM. Assessments of eGFR and ABI may be useful in identifying patients with inappropriate LVM.
To compare the reliability of blood pressure (BP) readings obtained by an oscillometric device to those obtained by auscultation and assess for differences in BP status classification based upon the two techniques.
Resting BP was measured by auscultation and with an oscillometric device at the same encounter in 235 subjects enrolled in the Chronic Kidney Disease in Children study. Resting auscultatory BP’s were averaged and compared with averaged oscillometric readings. BP agreement by the two methods was assessed using Bland-Altman plots, and BP status classification agreement was assessed by calculation of Kappa statistics.
Oscillometric BP readings were higher than auscultatory readings, with a median paired difference of 9 mmHg for systolic BP (SBP) and 6 mmHg for diastolic BP (DBP). Correlation for mean SBP was 0.624 and for mean DBP was 0.491. The bias for oscillometric BP measurement was 8.7 mmHg for SBP (P<0.01) and 5.7 mmHg for DBP (P<0.01). BP status classification agreement was 61% for SBP and 63% for DBP, with Kappas of 0.31 for SBP and 0.20 for DBP.
Compared with auscultation, the oscillometric device significantly overestimated both systolic and diastolic BP, leading to frequent misclassification of BP status.
To evaluate the accuracy of the ankle brachial index (ABI) measured with the SCVL® (“screening cardiovascular lab”; GenNov, Paris, France), an automated device with synchronized arm and ankle cuffs with an automatic ABI calculation.
Patients were consecutively included in a cardiovascular prevention unit if they presented with at least two cardiovascular risk factors. ABI measurements were made using the SCVL, following a synchronized assessment of brachial and ankle systolic pressure. These values were compared to the ABI obtained with the usual Doppler-assisted method.
We included 157 patients. Mean age was 59.1 years, 56.8% had hypertension, 22.3% had diabetes mellitus, and 17.6% were current smokers. An abnormal ABI was observed in 17.2% with the SCVL and in 16.2% with the Doppler. The prevalence rates of an abnormal ABI by patient measured with each device, ie, 15.7% (confidence interval [CI] 0.95: [11.8; 20.4]) or 14.3% (CI 0.95: [10.7; 18.9]), did not differ. The coefficient of variation of Doppler and SCVL measures was 15.8% and 15.1%, respectively. The regression line between the two measurement methods was statistically significant. The value-to-value comparison also shows a difference of mean equal to 0.010 (CI 0.95: [−0.272; 0.291]) (r = −0.055). Reproducibility of ABI measurements with the SCVL showed a difference of mean equal to 0.009 (CI 0.95: [−0.203; 0.222]), without heteroscedasticity (r = −0.003).
The SCVL is a fast and easy to use automated oscillometric device for the determination of ABI. The use of this two-synchronized-cuff device correlates well with the gold standard Doppler ultrasound method and is reproducible. The SCVL may ease the screening for peripheral arterial disease in routine medical practice.
ankle brachial index; automated device; peripheral arterial disease screening
Peripheral artery tonometry (PAT) is a novel method for assessing arterial stiffness of small digital arteries. Pulse pressure can be regarded as a surrogate of large artery stiffness. When ankle-brachial index (ABI) is calculated using the higher of the two ankle systolic pressures as denominator (ABI-higher), leg perfusion can be reliably estimated. However, using the lower of the ankle pressures to calculate ABI (ABI-lower) identifies more patients with isolated peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in ankle arteries. We aimed to compare the ability of PAT, pulse pressure, and different calculations of ABI to detect atherosclerotic disease in lower extremities. We examined PAT, pulse pressure, and ABI in 66 cardiovascular risk subjects in whom borderline PAD (ABI 0.91 to 1.00) was diagnosed 4 years earlier. Using ABI-lower to diagnose PAD yielded 2-fold higher prevalence of PAD than using ABI-higher. Endothelial dysfunction was diagnosed in 15/66 subjects (23%). In a bivariate correlation analysis, pulse pressure was negatively correlated with ABI-higher (r = −0.347, p = 0.004) and with ABI-lower (r = −0.424, p < 0.001). PAT hyperemic response was not significantly correlated with either ABI-higher (r = −0.148, p = 0.24) or with ABI-lower (r = −0.208, p = 0.095). Measurement of ABI using the lower of the two ankle pressures is an efficient method to identify patients with clinical or subclinical atherosclerosis and worth performing on subjects with pulse pressure above 65 mm Hg. The usefulness of PAT measurement in detecting PAD is vague.
Ankle-brachial index; peripheral arterial disease; hypertension
To determine the association between pseudoexfoliation (PEX) and peripheral vascular disease (PVD) among age-related cataract.
Iladevi Cataract and IOL Research Center, Ahmedabad, India.
Material and methods
An observational age-matched case-control study of 160 patients over 60 years of age with age-related cataract. A total of 40 subjects with PEX (cases) were compared with 120 subjects with cataract but without PEX (controls). A detailed medical history, including hypertension, diabetes mellitus, cerebrovascular stroke and ischaemic heart disease, was recorded. Ankle brachial index (ABI) was used to determine the risk of PVD among age-related cataract patients. Color Doppler imaging was performed on the brachial and dorsalis pedis artery to measure ABI and detect PVD. Least mean ABI was the main outcome measure, as low ABI indicates higher risk for PVD. The lowest mean ABI was measured for each subject. An ABI ratio of <0.90 was considered abnormal. The Mann–Whitney U-test and logistic regression were used for analysis.
The lowest mean ABI in the controls was 0.98±0.03 (SD; a range of 0.86–1.08) as compared with 0.88±0.02 (SD) among the cases (a range of 0.79–0.92; P<0.001). When compared with controls, cases had a lower ABI (P<0.001) irrespective of the presence or absence of systemic illness. On multiple regression analysis adjusting for systemic illness, the presence of PEX increased the odds of a low ABI group 150 times (P<0.001).
Subjects with cataract and PEX had a significantly lower ABI as compared with controls (cataracts without PEX). PEX is associated with and may be a risk factor for PVD.
pseudoexfoliation; ABI; PVD; cataract