Background: It has been observed that hepatic steatosis is related to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Alanine aminotransferase (ALT), an indicator of the severity of hepatic steatosis is also associated with CVD. This study focused on the relationship between hepatic steatosis and ALT with coronary calcification.
Methods: We performed a cross-sectional study to examine the association between hepatic steatosis and serum ALT with coronary calcification in 1218 subjects (772 men, 446 women; ages 30-75 years). We evaluated hepatic steatosis and ALT as categorical variables, and constructed four groups (reference group; only with hepatic steatosis; only with ALT >30 U/L; with both hepatic steatosis and ALT >30 U/L), which did not overlap. Multi-detected row computed tomography (MDCT) was used to measure coronary calcium score.
Results: The adjusted ORs (95% CIs) for coronary calcification in the four groups were 1.00 (reference), 1.24 (0.68-2.26), 1.82 (0.78-4.23), and 2.12 (1.08-4.20) after adjusting for confounding variables. In addition, an increase in serum ALT activity of 10 U/L was associated with an increased risk of coronary atherosclerosis.
Conclusions: In summary, patients with both hepatic steatosis and increases in ALT are associated with coronary calcification as a marker of coronary atherosclerosis determined by MDCT. This finding suggested that subjects with both hepatic steatosis and increased ALT should be considered for further evaluation of coronary atherosclerosis.