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Cardiology Research and Practice
Volume 2014, Article ID 216080, 5 pages
Research Article

How Aortic Stiffness in Postmenopausal Women Is Related to Common Cardiovascular Risk Factors

1ASL BRINDISI, Cardiology Equipe, District of Brindisi, Via Francia 47, 72100 Brindisi, Italy
2Cardiovascular Diseases Section, Department of Emergency and Organ Transplantation (DETO), University of Bari, Italy

Received 26 May 2014; Revised 1 July 2014; Accepted 4 July 2014; Published 16 July 2014

Academic Editor: Frans Leenen

Copyright © 2014 Maria Maiello et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. Our study investigates major common cardiovascular risk factors relation with aortic stiffness on 269 postmenopausal women by global pulse wave velocity (PWVg), useful to relate PWVg to risk of major cardiovascular events. Patients and Methods. Women were categorized as hypertensive (H), hypercholesterolemic (C), or diabetic (D). Aortic stiffness was assessed by PWVg measured with pulsed Doppler, at the left ventricular outflow tract (LVOT) and at the right common femoral artery. Results. All population mean PWVg was 8.2 m/s. 85 (26.5%) women were H; mean PWVg was 7.9 m/s. HC women were 118 (36.7%), with mean PWVg 8.3 m/s. HD women were 30 (9.5%), with mean PWVg 7.8 m/s. HDC women were 36 (11.2%), with mean PWVg 9.3 m/s. 52 (16.1%) menstruate women without risk factor were control group (CG), with mean PWVg 6.5 m/s. Highly significant was the statistical difference in PWVg between HDC women and each other group: versus CG; versus H; versus HC, and versus HD. No difference in PWG was observed comparing the other groups. There was difference for age among all groups, except for CG, made by younger women. Conclusion. PWVg was highly increased in postmenopausal women affected by hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia all at once. Hypertension is the major determinant for PWVg. The only addition of diabetes or hypercholesterolemia did not increase significantly PWVg. Our study supports the usefulness of the assessment of aortic stiffness as a marker of cardiovascular disease.