Very few studies have been performed to evaluate both the severity and site of aortic calcification (AC) in both end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) and diabetes mellitus (DM). The purpose of our study was to examine the utility of a newly developed three-dimensional (3D) visualization and quantification method compared with other methods to evaluate vascular calcification in ESKD patients with and without DM.
Fifty patients with ESKD before initiating hemodialysis at our hospital were included in the present study. They were divided into the two groups, depending on the presence or absence of DM: Control group (n = 31) and DM group (n = 19). The volume and site of AC were evaluated via computed tomography (CT) scan using a 3D visualization and quantification method.
Total calcification volume was significantly greater in the DM group than in the Control group. Calcification volume in the descending and abdominal aortas was greater in the DM group compared to the Control group. There were no significant differences in calcification volume in the aortic root, ascending aorta, and aortic arch. Calcification volume of the whole aorta, the descending aorta, and the abdominal aorta were each significantly correlated with age, diastolic blood pressure and pulse pressure.
This study using a 3D visualization and quantification method demonstrated that AC was more severe and occurred more frequently in the abdominal aorta in ESKD patients with DM compared to those without DM. This method would enable us to precisely evaluate the volume and distribution of AC.