Visceral adiposity is increased in those with Metabolic Syndrome (MetS) and atherosclerotic disease burden. In this study we evaluate for associations between intra-thoracic fat volume (ITFV) and myocardial infarction (MI) in patients with MetS.
Ninety-four patients with MetS, MI or both were identified from a cardiovascular CMR clinical registry. MetS was defined in accordance to published guidelines; where-as MI was defined as the presence of subendocardial-based injury on late gadolinium enhancement imaging in a coronary vascular distribution. A healthy control group was also obtained from the same registry. Patients were selected into the following groups: MetS+/MI- (N = 32), MetS-/MI + (N = 30), MetS+/MI + (N = 32), MetS-/MI- (N = 16). ITFV quantification was performed using signal threshold analysis of sequential sagittal CMR datasets (HASTE) and indexed to body mass index.
The mean age of the population was 59.8 ± 12.5 years. MetS+ patients (N=64) demonstrated a significantly higher indexed ITFV compared to MetS- patients (p = 0.05). Patients in respective MetS-/MI-, MetS+/MI-, MetS-/MI+, and MetS+/MI + study groups demonstrated a progressive elevation in the indexed ITFV (22.3 ± 10.6, 28.6 ± 12.6, 30.6 ± 12.3, and 35.2 ± 11.4 ml/kg/m2, (p = 0.002)). Among MetS+ patients those with MI showed a significantly higher indexed ITFV compared to those without MI (p = 0.02).
ITFV is elevated in patients with MetS and incrementally elevated among those with evidence of prior ischemic myocardial injury. Accordingly, the quantification of ITFV may be a valuable marker of myocardial infarction risk among patients with MetS and warrants further investigation.