Objective: To estimate the prevalence and risk of ischemic stroke associated with metabolic syndrome.
Methods and patients: In 197 stroke patients (80 cases of atherothrombotic infarction, 97 lacunar infarction, 16 cardioembolic infarction, 4 others) and 356 age- and sex-matched control subjects aged 65 years and older in Seiyo Municipal Nomura Hospital, we investigated the association between metabolic syndrome and risk factor-dependent augmentation of ischemic stroke in subjects with several risk factors for atherosclerosis. The diagnosis of cerebral infarction in each patient was confirmed by CT findings of the brain and metabolic syndrome was defined as at least 3 of the 5 following conditions: visceral obesity, hypertension (HT), hypertriglyceridemia, low HDL-cholesterol and diabetes mellitus (DM).
Results: After adjustment for sex, age, and smoking, metabolic syndrome was significantly related to atherothrombotic infarction (odds ratio, 3.08; 95% confidence interval, 1.69-5.61). Of the individual components, visceral obesity, HT and DM were independent risk factors for atherothrombotic infarction. Increased risk for atherothrombotic infarction was also associated with increases in the 5 component conditions of the metabolic syndrome.
Conclusion: The clustering of cardiovascular risk factors called metabolic syndrome increases the risk of cardiovascular morbidity, and its identification may thus be important in risk assessment and treatment of patients.