Advances in medical sciences 2017 05 1062(2) 223-229 pii S1896-1126(17)30027-5
We aimed to evaluate the association between carotid-radial pulse wave velocity (PWV), augmentation index (AIx), and flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the brachial artery and factors potentially influencing them in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and systemic sclerosis (SSc).
MATERIAL AND METHODS
316 patients diagnosed with RA (32%), SLE (20%), SSc (16%) and 156 controls (32%) were included in the study. Parameters of arterial stiffness AIx and PWV were obtained using applanation tonometry. FMD reflecting endothelial function was measured by ultrasound.
AIx was increased in all three diseases (p<0.0001), but no differences were found between rheumatic diseases. In most of the RA cases PWV values were abnormal (on average by 0.52m/sec higher than in controls), while in SSc patients FMD values were diminished (p=0.006). Mean blood pressure (MBP) was the most consistent predictive factor in all three diseases, influencing both PWV and AIx, although patient age was also important in variation of AIx. The disease activity score (DAS28) was relevant only in RA patients. Furthermore, SLE disease activity index in SLE or Rodnan skin thickness score had no statistical significance in SSc and inflammatory markers. CONCLUSIONS
Both, PWV and AIx are dependent on MBP and age DAS28 may affect AIx in RA patients, while other disease or inflammatory markers are unlikely to have any effect. MBP is one of the main cardiovascular risk factors affecting the arterial stiffness in RA, SLE and SSc patients therefore controlling MBP in systemic rheumatic disease patients is mandatory.