Systemic arteriosclerosis is associated with left ventricular remodeling but not atherosclerosis: a TASCFORCE study

Jonathan R. Weir-McCall, Matthew Lambert, Stephen J. Gandy, Jill J. F. Belch, Ian Cavin, Shelley A. Henderson, Roberta Littleford, Jennifer A. Macfarlane, Shona Z. Matthew, R. Stephen Nicholas, Allan D. Struthers, Frank Sullivan, Richard D. White, J. Graeme Houston*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Arteriosclerosis (arterial stiffening) is associated with future cardiovascular events, with this effect postulated to be due to its effect on cardiac afterload, atherosclerosis (plaque formation) progression or both, but with limited evidence examining these early in disease formation. The aim of the current study is to examine the association between arteriosclerosis, atherosclerosis and ventricular remodelling in a population at low-intermediate cardiovascular risk.

Methods: One thousand six hundred fifty-one subjects free of clinical cardiovascular disease and with a <20% 10 year cardiovascular risk score underwent a cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) study and whole body CMR angiogram. Arteriosclerosis was measured using total arterial compliance (TAC) - calculated as the indexed stroke volume divided by the pulse pressure. Atherosclerosis was quantified using a standardised atheroma score (SAS) which was calculated by scoring 30 arterial segments within the body based on the degree of stenosis, summating these scores and normalising it to the number of assessable segments. Left ventricular remodelling was measured using left ventricular mass to volume ratio (LVMVR).

Results: One thousand five hundred fifteen (38% male, 53.8 +/- 8.2 years old) completed the study. On univariate analysis TAC was associated with SAS but this was lost after accounting for cardiovascular risk factors in both males (B = -0.001 (-0.004-0.002),p = 0.62) and females (B = 0.000(95% CI -0.002-0.002), p = 0.78). In contrast compliance correlated with LVMVR after accounting for cardiovascular risk factors (B = - 0.12(95% CI -0.16-0.091), p <0.001 in males; B = - 0.12(95% CI -0.15-0.086), p <0.001 in females).

Conclusion: Systemic arteriosclerosis is associated with left ventricular remodelling but not atherosclerosis. Future efforts in cardiovascular risk prevention should thus seek to address both arteriosclerosis and atherosclerosis individually.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jan 2018


  • Arterial complaince
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Left ventricle
  • Cardiovascular risk


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