Introduction: Carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (cfPWV), a marker of central arterial stiffness is highly predictive of cardiovascular events and helps to discriminate between patients at low and high risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes when added to the conventional risks.
Objectives: To describe the 10-year cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk and to determine the difference in cfPWV in 10-year CVD risk groups in hypertensive patients attending primary health care.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted from January to December 2012 in Out-Patient Clinic, Universiti Sains Malaysia Hospital. The CVD risk and arterial stiffness were assessed by Framingham Coronary Disease Risk Prediction Score (FRS) and cfPWV respectively. ANOVA and ANCOVA analyses were done using SPSS version 19.0.
Results: A total of 197 hypertensive patients were involved with a response-rate of 92.4%. The proportion of 10-year CVD of low (<10%), intermediate (10-20%) and high (>20%) risk groups were 71.1%, 25.4% and 3.6% respectively. ANCOVA showed no difference in cfPWV in 10- year CVD risk categories after adjusting for body mass index, waist-hip ratio, duration of hypertension, education, family history of CVD and diabetes mellitus (P=0.562).
Conclusion: Although the cfPWV was not different among the 10-year CVD risk categories in hypertensive patients, there was a significant alterations of aortic function even in low 10-year CVD risk and the cfPWV index was increased in higher risk categories. The measured level of target organ damage in each CVD risk groups would hopefully motivate more treatment that is aggressive and presumably improved health outcomes in hypertensive patients.