Background: The purpose of this study was to describe the prevalence and extent of coronary artery calcification (CAC) in subjects with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stages 3 and 4 comparing those with and without diabetes. We also wished to determine if the presence of peripheral artery calcification (PAC) would assist in identifying patients positive for CAC.
Methods: CAC was detected by multi-slice computed tomography and PAC was detected by plain foot radiography. Study population was 112 patients, 54 with diabetes and 58 without, all asymptomatic for heart disease. Demographic and laboratory data were collected and analysed.
Results: The prevalence of CAC in CKD patients was 76 and 46.5% with and without diabetes, respectively. Patients with diabetes had higher CAC scores with more vessels affected, and in the presence of diabetes men and women had the same risk for CAC. In patients with diabetes, age was the unique explanatory variable for detecting the presence of CAC, while age and smoking history predicted severity. In patients without diabetes, age, male gender, body mass index, estimated glomerular filtration rate and serum phosphate levels predicted the presence of CAC, while parathyroid hormone predicted severity. Prevalence of PAC was 63 and 12% in subjects with and without diabetes. PAC detected by foot radiography was not an adequate alternative-screening marker for identifying patients with CAC.
Conclusions: CAC is common in CKD stages 3 and 4 patients, especially in men and women with diabetes.