Background The principal cause of death in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the cardiovascular disease (CVD) associated with atherosclerosis. To improve the prognosis of living in RA patients an early diagnostics of atherosclerosis which lies in the base of it is necessary.
Objectives The aim of this study is to estimate the intima-media thickness (IMT) of carotid arteries in RA patients depending on the degree of coronary risk. Doppler sonography of carotid arteries was performed in 110 patients with RA and 20 healthy individuals. Evaluation of fatal complication on a SCORE scale was performed; the overall risk of coronary heart disease (total coronary risk) was calculated.
Results In RA patients, there is markedly increased prevalence of preclinical atherosclerosis compared to control. In 49 (44, 6%) patients with RA thickening of the intima-media complex has been revealed. In 19 (17,3%) patients atherosclerotic plaque was detected. The IMT dependence on the traditional risk factors is found. At the same time in the absence of the traditional risk factors the features of the course of RA (the presence of systemic manifestations, RA duration, and systemic inflammation severity) contribute to increased carotid IMT, especially in young patients. In RA patients, plaque presence is associated with age, high SCORE.
Conclusions Thus, the presence of RA can be considered as a separate RF of atherosclerosis development. Measurement of IMT in RA patients with moderate risk of fatal complications can be used for early diagnosis of atherosclerosis in RA patients.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared