PAD 'is a bigger risk factor than coronary artery disease'

Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a bigger risk factor for stroke, MI and vascular death than coronary artery disease (CAD), say researchers from the Netherlands.

The findings back calls for PAD to be included in the quality framework. Currently CAD, or atherosclerosis, is included in the framework, which awards GPs quality points for creating a register and managing these patients.

The Second Manifestations of Arterial Disease (SMART) study involved 3,114 patients treated for cerebrovascular disease (CVD), CAD or PAD. Risk factors between the three groups differed. Those with CAD were most obese, with an average BMI of 27.3, among PAD patients 54 per cent smoked, and they had higher rates of hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia.

Over a mean follow-up of 4.1 years, 14.1 per cent of PAD patients suffered a stroke or MI, as did 14.5 per cent of those with CVD and 6.8 per cent of those with CAD.

Further, 3.9 per cent of PAD patients died of a vascular cause in this time, compared with 3 per cent of those with CVD and 1.4 per cent of those with CAD.

rachel.liddle@haymarket.com

www.eurostroke.eu

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