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Variability of Carotid Intima Media Thickness in Youth According to the Geographic Region

Keywords: Atherosclerosis , carotid artery , cardiovascular disease , risk factor

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AIM: Carotid intima media thickness (IMT) is proposed to be an earlier predictor of subclinical atherosclerosis. Currently risk management of atherosclerosis at earlier ages gains importance. In this study we evaluated the carotid intima media thickness of young individuals and any possible changes due to the geographic region in which the individuals lived in. METHOD: Totally, 164 young individuals (age 21.14± 2.06) were enrolled to the study. Geographic regions in which they have been living for at least 10 years were documented. Measurements of IMT were performed by Logic5 Pro Color Doppler Device using transverse probe. Measurements of IMT, systolic and diastolic blood pressures, and levels of total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, and triglyceride were compared between the groups designed according to the geographic regions. Statistical analysis was performed by Oneway ANOVA test using SPSS 11.0 for Windows. RESULTS: Carotid IMT was significantly lower in subjects living in Mediterranean (0.416±0.02 mm) and South East Region (0.428±0.04), whereas it increased in subjects living in Marmara Region (0.468±0.06 mm) and Mid-Anatolian Region (0.473±0.04). CONCLUSION: We can propose that individual changes in carotid intima media thickness may develop at younger ages. Differences in dietary habits and its content, also cultural, and environmental differences due to geographic region in which the individuals lived in may contribute those changes. Measurement of IMT could be used as a screening test to detect young individuals with subclinical atherosclerosis in geographic region at risk for atherosclerosis in the future. [TAF Prev Med Bull. 2009; 8(2): 119-124]

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