Heart failure (HF) is a leading cause of morbidity. Strategies for preventing HF are paramount. Prevalent extracoronary calcification is associated with HF risk but less is known about progression of mitral annular (MAC) and aortic valve calcification (AVC) and HF risk. Progression of valvular calcification (VC) [interval change of >0 units/yr] was assessed by 2 cardiac computed tomography scans over a median of 2.4 years. We used Cox regression to determine the risk of adjudicated HF and linear mixed effects models to determine 10-year change in left ventricular (LV) parameters measured by cardiac magnetic resonance imaging associated with VC progression. We studied 5,591 MESA participants free of baseline cardiovascular disease. Mean ± SD age was 62 ± 10 years; 53% women; 83% had no VC progression, 15% progressed at 1 site (AVC or MAC) and 3% at both sites. There were 251 incident HF over 15 years. After adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors, the hazard ratios (95% confidence interval) of HF associated with VC progression at 1 and 2 sites were 1.62 (1.21 to 2.17) and 1.88 (1.14 to 3.09), respectively, compared with no progression (p-for-trend <0.001). Hazard ratios were higher for HFpEF (2.52 [1.63 to 3.90] and 2.49 [1.19 to 5.25]) but nonsignificant for HFrEF. Both AVC (1.61 [1.19 to 2.19]) and MAC (1.50 [1.09 to 2.07]) progression were associated with HF. VC was associated with worsening of some LV parameters over 10 years. In conclusion, VC progression was associated with increased risk of HF and change in LV function. Interventions targeted at reducing VC progression may also impact HF risk, particularly HFpEF.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00005487.
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