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Association of Breast Arterial Calcification Presence and Gradation with the Ankle-Brachial Index among Postmenopausal Women

To examine the association of breast arterial calcification (BAC) with the ankle brachial index (ABI), a sensitive metric of peripheral arterial disease (PAD), among postmenopausal women. Background: BAC is an emerging risk marker of cardiovascular disease (CVD). MINERVA (MultIethNic study of brEast aRterial calcium gradation and cardioVAscular disease) is a cohort of women aged 60 to 79 at baseline (10/24/2012 – 2/13/2015) who were free of symptomatic CVD at baseline. The analytical sample comprised 3,800 women with available ABI, BAC assessment and covariates. We performed cross-sectional logistic regression analysis. 203 women (5.3%) had an ABI < 0.90 indicative of PAD, 26 (0.7%) had an ABI > 1.3 and 94% (n=3,571) had an ABI within normal limits. After adjustment for age, race/ethnicity, body mass index, smoking status, diabetes, hypertension, LDL-C, HDL-C, hs-CRP, estimated-GFR, urinary albumin/creatinine ratio, serum calcium, serum vitamin D and serum PTH, BAC presence remained significantly associated with ABI < 0.90 (OR=1.37; 95% CI, 1.01-1.87; p=0.04). After further adjustment for menopausal hormone therapy, parity and history of breast feeding, the association became marginally significant (OR=1.36; 95% CI, 0.99-1.85; p=0.05). No clear pattern of association was observed for increased gradation of BAC and ABI<0.9, and no significant associations were noted between BAC presence vs. absence or BAC gradation with ABI > 1.3. Among asymptomatic postmenopausal women, presence of BAC was associated with PAD independently of traditional risk factors. Additional prospective studies are required to establish the value of BAC for prediction of incident PAD in the general population.

Authors: Iribarren C; Sanchez G; Lu M; Bidgoli FA; Cho HM; Ding H; Molloi S

Eur J Cardiovasc Med. 2018 Nov;5(5):544-551. Epub 2018-11-16.

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