BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular disease is one of the most serious complications following end-stage renal disease. This is most likely caused by a combination of the classical cardiovascular risk factors and the vasculotoxicity of uremia. ESRD is associated with both intima- and media-sclerosis, which leads to increased arterial stiffness, PWV and AIx. The objectives of our study were to assess pulse pressure, PWV and AIx as markers of arterial stiffness, and to look for correlations with other parameters.
METHODS: Central aortic pressure and various indices were determined using the SphygmoCor apparatus. The study was undertaken in 21 patients with ESRD at the dialysis unit at Ullevål University Hospital.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS : We found that PP, PWV and AIx are not concurrent parameters of arterial stiffness. PWV appears to be a more specific marker of arterial stiffness than AIx. We found a strong correlation (P = 0,000) between triglycerides and PWV, but no correlations between cholesterol and PWV. This result suggests not only that ESRD-patients have higher levels of triglycerides, but also that triglycerides have a different patophysiological significance in these patients. We found positive correlations between KT/V and AIx, but no correlations with PWV. This is surprising and could suggest that those who are well dialysed have higher AIx and hence stiffer arteries.