Objective: Cardiovascular events are the main cause of premature death after successful repair of aortic coarctation (CoA). The aim of this study was to assess the selected biochemical markers of atherosclerosis in normotensive CoA repaired patients and to establish its relation to ultrasound indexes of vascular pathology.
Methods: 62 patients after CoA repair (37 males, age: 34.1 ± 1.4 yrs) and 20 control individuals (10 males, age: 34.8 ± 2.2 yrs) were enrolled in the study. The serum markers: asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA), nitrites/nitrates (NOx), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP), and following vascular parameters: flow-mediated dilatation (FMD), intima-media thickness (IMT) and pulse wave velocity (PWV) were analyzed.
Results: 33 CoA repaired patients were normotensive, and compared to controls, they presented higher serum ADMA concentrations (0.59 ± 0.04 umol/l vs. 0.46 ± 0.03 umol/l, p=0.035). An analysis of the vascular parameters revealed decreased FMD (4.75 ± 0.5%), NMD (11.86 ± 0.8%) and increased PWV (6.90 ± 0.2 m/s) values in the normotensive patients as compared with the control group (FMD: 8.6 ± 0.9%, p<0.001, NMD: 20.94 ± 1.7%, p<0.001; PWV: 5.49 ± 0.2, p=0.023). There were no differences in the serum levels of NOx, hsCRP as well as IMT values between normotensive patients and the control group. A multivariate regression analysis revealed that serum ADMA level was a factor independently associated with the FMD value (r=-0.334; p=0.031) in normotensive CoA repaired group.
Conclusions: Early biochemical and vascular indices of atherosclerosis such as increased serum ADMA concentration as well as impaired vasodilatation and increased arterial stiffness are observed in patients after CoA repair. Serum ADMA is a strong predictor of endothelial dysfunction in patients with CoA repair.
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