Prevalence and clinical characteristics of peripheral arterial disease in the study population Hermex

Rev Esp Cardiol (Engl Ed). 2012 Aug;65(8):726-33. doi: 10.1016/j.recesp.2012.03.008. Epub 2012 Jun 22.
[Article in English, Spanish]


Introduction and objectives: To estimate the prevalence of peripheral arterial disease as measured on ankle-brachial index and evaluate the associated risk, clinical, and diagnostic factors.

Methods: Cross-sectional study conducted in a random population-based sample of 2833 individuals aged 25 to 79 years from Don Benito health area (Badajoz). Peripheral arterial disease was considered for ankle-brachial index<0.90. To identify symptomatic disease we used the Edinburgh questionnaire. The current screening recommendations, changes to other categories of estimated coronary risk associated with index measurements, and the association with risk factors were assessed.

Results: The prevalence of peripheral arterial disease was 3.7% (95% confidence interval, 3.0%-4.5%), 5.0% (3.9%-6.3%) in men and 2.6% (1.8%-3.5%) in women (P=.001). The cumulative prevalence in those aged 50, 60 and 70 years were 6.2%, 9.1%, and 13.1% respectively. The disease was symptomatic in 13.3% (6.8%-19.8%) of cases and 29.6% of asymptomatic patients were not detected as recommended for high-risk groups. The use of ankle-brachial index increased the number of individuals with high coronary risk by 32.7%. Peripheral arterial disease was positively associated with age, smoking, hypercholesterolemia, sedentary lifestyle, microalbuminuria and history of cardiovascular disease, and negatively with alcohol consumption.

Conclusions: The use of ankle-brachial index for peripheral arterial disease diagnosis is advisable because of the low prevalence of symptomatic cases and the associated change in estimated coronary risk. Screening groups should be adapted to the Spanish population. Smoking and hypercholesterolemia are major associated risk factors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Ankle Brachial Index
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypercholesterolemia / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease / epidemiology*
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease / therapy*
  • Population
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Spain / epidemiology
  • Young Adult