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The Texas Heart Journal



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Arteriosclerosis/complications/pathology, calcinosis/complications, coronary artery disease/etiology/pathology, coronary vessels/pathology/physiology, dilatation, pathologic/pathology, disease progression, models, cardiovascular, regression analysis, risk assessment, tomography, x-ray computed/methods


Arterial remodeling, an early change of atherosclerosis, can cause dilated arterial diameter. We measured coronary artery diameter with use of noncontrast 64-slice multidetector computed tomography (MDCT), and studied its association with coronary artery calcium levels and traditional coronary risk factors.

We included 140 patients from the ACCURACY trial whose noncontrast MDCT images showed measurable coronary arteries. Using 3 measurements of left main coronary artery (LMCA) and right coronary artery (RCA) diameters within 3 mm of the ostium, we associated the results with traditional coronary risk factors and calcium scores.

The prevalence of LMCA and RCA calcium was 22% and 51%, respectively. Mean arterial diameters were 5.67 ± 1.18 mm (LMCA) and 4.66 ± 1.08 mm (RCA). Correlations for LMCA and RCA diameters in 50 randomly chosen patients were 0.91 and 0.93 (interobserver) and 0.98 and 0.93 (intraobserver). Adjusted odds ratios for the relationship of LMCA and RCA diameters to calcium in male versus female patients were 5.65 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.78–11.5) and 4.35 (95% CI, 2.24–8.47), respectively. Adjusted ratios and 95% CIs for the association of larger RCA diameter with age, hypertension, and body mass index were 1.36 (1.00–1.86), 3.13 (1.26–7.78), and 1.60 (1.16–2.22), respectively.

Arterial diameters were larger in women and patients with higher calcium levels, and body mass index and hypertension were predictors of larger RCA diameters. These findings suggest a link between arterial remodeling and the severity of atherosclerosis.



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