Arterial stiffness in subclinical atherosclerosis through ultrafast pulse wave velocity measurements: Comparison with a healthy population using propensity score matching
Xuezhong Jiang1, Weiming Ge1, Hui Huang2 , Yating Li1, Xiaojing Liu1, Huiyan Pang1, Rui He1, Hui Wang1, Zhengqiu Zhu2, Ping He1, Yinping Wang2, Xuehui Ma2, Airong Ren1, Bixiao Shen2, Meijuan Wang1
1Jiangsu Province Official Hospital, Nanjing, China
2Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Jiangsu Province Hospital of Chinese, Nanjing, China
Corresponding Author: Hui Huang ,Tel: /, Fax: /, Email:
Received: March 21, 2024;  Accepted: April 24, 2024.  Published online: April 24, 2024.
To evaluate ultrafast pulse wave velocity (ufPWV) changes in arterial stiffness populations with subclinical atherosclerosis (subAS) and provide cutoff values.
This retrospective study recruited 231 participants, including 67 patients with subAS. We measured the pulse wave velocity at the beginning and end of systole (PWV-BS and PWV-ES, respectively) using ultrafast ultrasound to assess arterial stiffness. The right and left common carotid arteries were measured separately, and laboratory metabolic parameters were also collected. Participants were balanced between groups using propensity score matching (PSM) at a 1:1 ratio, adjusting for potential confounders of age, sex and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). We determined the cutoff values of ufPWV in monitoring subAS via receiver operating characteristics (ROCs).
PWV-ES (all P < 0.05), unlike PWV-BS, was higher in the subAS subgroup than in the subAS-free group after PSM. For each 1 m/s increase in left, right, and bilateral mean PWV-ES, the risk of subAS increased by 23% (95% CI = 1.04-1.46), 26% (95% CI = 1.07-1.52), and 38% (95% CI = 1.12-1.72), respectively. According to ROC analyses, PWV-ES demonstrated predictive potential in in left (cutoff value = 7.910 m/s, P = 0.002), right (cutoff value = 6.615 m/s, P = 0.003), and bilateral mean (cutoff value = 7.415 m/s, P < 0.001), but not in PWV-BS (all P > 0.05).
PWV-ES measured by ultrafast ultrasound was significantly higher in the populations with subAS than in those without. And specific PWV-ES cutoff values showed potential to predict an increased risk of subAS.
Keywords: Subclinical atherosclerosis; Ultrafast pulse wave velocity; Cutoff value; Propensity score matching
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