Abstract 3648: Clinical Cardiovascular Disease in Women is Associated With Increased Epicardial, but Not Subcutaneous Fat Thickness
INTRODUCTION: Visceral adipose tissue, such as epicardial fat, is metabolically active, and may portend increased risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) compared to subcutaneous fat. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) can accurately delineate fat, but data are sparse regarding the relationship of epicardial and subcutaneous fat burden to CVD in community-living adult women.
METHODS: 957 women (aged 64± 8 years) in the Framingham Heart Study Offspring cohort, followed by serial examinations since 1974, underwent CMR on a 1.5-T Philips system using an ECG-gated cine SSFP sequence. Epicardial fat thickness (EFT) over the midlevel right ventricle was measured from a 4-chamber view. Suprasternal subcutaneous fat thickness (SFT) was measured at the main pulmonary artery level. We compared EFT and SFT between women with clinical CVD, documented by a physician endpoint committee (+CVD), vs. those without (noCVD) based on Cycle 7 (1998 –2002) clinical data. Differences were assessed by two-sample T-test; ANOVA was used to adjust for age, diabetes, hypertension and menopausal status.
RESULTS: The +CVD group comprised 74 (8%) women who were older and more likely to be postmenopausal, diabetic and hypertensive than noCVD women (Table⇓). EFT was greater in +CVD (10.5 ± 5.1mm) vs. noCVD (8.6 ± 5.2mm) groups, p<0.003. This difference remained significant after adjusting for age, diabetes, hypertension and menopausal status (Table⇓). No difference in SFT or body mass index was observed between groups (p=NS).
CONCLUSIONS: Women with history of clinical CVD have greater EFT than women without CVD, and this difference persists after adjustment for common cardiovascular risk factors. However, subcutaneous fat, as assessed by chest wall adiposity, did not differ between groups. EFT may be a useful marker for cardiovascular risk, and prospective investigation of the relationship between EFT and future risk for CVD is warranted.