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      Usefulness of Microalbuminuria in Cardiovascular Risk Stratification of Essential Hypertensive Patients

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          Abstract

          Background/Aims: To evaluate the influence of microalbuminuria (albumin excretion rate – AER) determination and echocardiography (ECHO) on cardiovascular risk stratification, initially performed according the 1999 WHO/ISH guidelines by using only routine diagnostic procedures with or without fundal examination. Methods: 312 essential hypertensives attending our institution were studied retrospectively. Cardiovascular risk was assessed in a semiquantitative way using four categories of absolute cardiovascular disease risk (low, medium, high and very high risk), as proposed by the 1999 WHO/ISH guidelines, on the basis of data on the average 10-year risk of cardiovascular events among participants in the Framingham Study. Results: Without the retinal data, estimating the level of global cardiovascular risk on the basis of routine work-up alone, 14% were classified as low-risk patients, 48% were as medium-risk, 20% as high-risk and 18% at very-high-risk patients. The combined use of AER and ECHO, in line with the newer ESH-ESC guidelines, determined a statistically significant reclassification of the hypertensive patients. Only 10% remained in the low-risk category, 28% were classified in the medium-, 42% in the high- and 20% in the very-high-risk classes. The overall percentage of patients that changed risk stratum (mostly shifting from the medium- to the high-risk class) was significantly different from the proportion of subjects reclassified after the addition of either microalbuminuria or echocardiography alone. No change in the distribution of risk categories was observed when AER assay and ECHO were added to routine procedures including funduscopic examination. Conclusions: Considering the questionable prognostic value of qualitative retinal examination, our results suggest that cardiovascular risk evaluation based only on simple routine work-up, ignoring the information provided by AER determination and ECHO, may underestimate the level of absolute risk.

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          Most cited references 12

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          Echocardiographic assessment of left ventricular hypertrophy: comparison to necropsy findings.

          To determine the accuracy of echocardiographic left ventricular (LV) dimension and mass measurements for detection and quantification of LV hypertrophy, results of blindly read antemortem echocardiograms were compared with LV mass measurements made at necropsy in 55 patients. LV mass was calculated using M-mode LV measurements by Penn and American Society of Echocardiography (ASE) conventions and cube function and volume correction formulas in 52 patients. Penn-cube LV mass correlated closely with necropsy LV mass (r = 0.92, p less than 0.001) and overestimated it by only 6%; sensitivity in 18 patients with LV hypertrophy (necropsy LV mass more than 215 g) was 100% (18 of 18 patients) and specificity was 86% (29 of 34 patients). ASE-cube LV mass correlated similarly to necropsy LV mass (r = 0.90, p less than 0.001), but systematically overestimated it (by a mean of 25%); the overestimation could be corrected by the equation: LV mass = 0.80 (ASE-cube LV mass) + 0.6 g. Use of ASE measurements in the volume correction formula systematically underestimated necropsy LV mass (by a mean of 30%). In a subset of 9 patients, 3 of whom had technically inadequate M-mode echocardiograms, 2-dimensional echocardiographic (echo) LV mass by 2 methods was also significantly related to necropsy LV mass (r = 0.68, p less than 0.05 and r = 0.82, p less than 0.01). Among other indexes of LV anatomy, only measurement of myocardial cross-sectional area was acceptably accurate for quantitation of LV mass (r = 0.80, p less than 0.001) or diagnosis of LV hypertrophy (sensitivity = 72%, specificity = 94%).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
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            Urinary albumin excretion predicts cardiovascular and noncardiovascular mortality in general population.

            For the general population, the clinical relevance of an increased urinary albumin excretion rate is still debated. Therefore, we examined the relationship between urinary albumin excretion and all-cause mortality and mortality caused by cardiovascular (CV) disease and non-CV disease in the general population. In the period 1997 to 1998, all inhabitants of the city of Groningen, the Netherlands, aged between 28 and 75 years (n=85 421) were sent a postal questionnaire collecting information about risk factors for CV disease and CV morbidity and a vial to collect an early morning urine sample for measurement of urinary albumin concentration (UAC). The vital status of the cohort was subsequently obtained from the municipal register, and the cause of death was obtained from the Central Bureau of Statistics. Of these 85 421 subjects, 40 856 (47.8%) responded, and 40 548 could be included in the analysis. During a median follow-up period of 961 days (maximum 1139 days), 516 deaths with known cause were recorded. We found a positive dose-response relationship between increasing UAC and mortality. A higher UAC increased the risk of both CV and non-CV death after adjustment for other well-recognized CV risk factors, with the increase being significantly higher for CV mortality than for non-CV mortality (P=0.014). A 2-fold increase in UAC was associated with a relative risk of 1.29 for CV mortality (95% CI 1.18 to 1.40) and 1.12 (95% CI 1.04 to 1.21) for non-CV mortality. Urinary albumin excretion is a predictor of all-cause mortality in the general population. The excess risk was more attributable to death from CV causes, independent of the effects of other CV risk factors, and the relationship was already apparent at levels of albuminuria currently considered to be normal.
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              The association of microalbuminuria and mortality in non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. A systematic overview of the literature.

               H Gerstein,  S Dinneen (1997)
              To critically analyze the literature linking microalbuminuria with total and cardiovascular mortality and cardiovascular morbidity in non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) and to quantify the risk. A combination of retrieval techniques (MEDLINE, SCISEARCH, and handsearching published bibliographies) was used to find all relevant articles based on title and abstract and "Methods" sections. Unpublished data on albumin excretion rate were sought from large NIDDM cohort studies. A total of 264 citations were retrieved, of which 11 cohort studies were selected for inclusion in the overview, representing a total of 2138 patients followed up for a mean of 6.4 years. Patient age was similar across cohorts. Duration of NIDDM ranged from newly diagnosed to 13 years. The prevalence of microalbuminuria ranged from 20% to 36% in the 8 cohorts that excluded patients with clinical proteinuria. All studies reported either a trend or a significant association between microalbuminuria and total mortality or cardiovascular morbidity or mortality; the overall odds ratio for death was 2.4 (95% confidence interval, 1.8-3.1) and for cardiovascular morbidity or mortality, 2.0 (95% confidence interval, 1.4-2.7). We found no evidence of reporting bias. Microalbuminuria is a strong predictor of total and cardiovascular mortality and cardiovascular morbidity in patients with NIDDM.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                NEC
                Nephron Clin Pract
                10.1159/issn.1660-2110
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                1660-2110
                2004
                April 2004
                17 November 2004
                : 96
                : 4
                : c123-c130
                Affiliations
                Dipartimento di Medicina Interna, Malattie Cardiovascolari e Nefrourologiche, Cattedra di Medicina Interna e Centro Ipertensione, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy
                Article
                77374 Nephron Clin Pract 2004;96:c123–c130
                10.1159/000077374
                15122066
                © 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 2, Tables: 2, References: 38, Pages: 1
                Product
                Self URI (application/pdf): https://www.karger.com/Article/Pdf/77374
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