Abstract 15920: The Prevalence of Atherosclerotic Disease in Those With Connective Tissue Disease as a Function of Age, Race, and Traditional Risk Factors
Background: Atherosclerosis is a multifactorial disease with an intrinsic inflammatory component, but it may also be influenced by systemic inflammation. There is cardiovascular risk associated with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), but there is still a need to clarify the contributions of traditional risk factors in those with inflammatory connective tissue diseases (CTD, which includes RA) in the development of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD). It would also be useful to identify particular groups of patients that are at disproportionately greater conferred risk for ASCVD owing to their CTD. For these reasons, a cross-sectional analysis of a diverse patient population could help develop finer ASCVD risk estimations in those with and without CTD.
Results: A systematically queried warehouse of de-identified data from over a quarter-million adult patients at our urban medical center over the past six years showed that prevalence of ASCVD steadily increases with age, consistent with rates found in other large cohorts, in both white and African-American patients. Amongst the ~9,000 patients with CTD (RA, other inflammatory polyarthropathy, lupus, Sjögren’s syndrome, systemic sclerosis, dermatomyositis, polymyositis), the overall prevalence of ASCVD was higher than amongst those without CTD with a rate ratio of 1.9 [95% CI 1.8-2.1] for white patients and 3.3 [95% CI 3.1-3.5] for African-American patients. Subgroup analysis revealed that the rate ratio was particularly high for young adults, and especially young African-American patients (ages 18-44; rate ratio for women: 10.7 [95% CI 8.5-13.5], for men: 9.9 [95% CI 6.8-14.5]). Rate ratios of ASCVD in those with vs. without CTD declined with age as traditional risk factors became more prevalent. Importantly, in those without any documented traditional risk factors (smoking, hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidemia), a diagnosis of ASCVD was found nearly three times more frequently in those with CTD than without [rate ratio 2.9, 95% CI 2.4-3.5].
Conclusions: CTD is associated with increased ASCVD rates, and major traditional risk factors do not fully account for these increased rates. African-Americans and young adults have a disproportionately strengthened association between CTD and ASCVD.
Author Disclosures: F.J. Alenghat: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.