Longitudinal displacement of the carotid wall and cardiovascular risk factors: associations with aging, adiposity, blood pressure and periodontal disease independent of cross-sectional distensibility and intima-media thickness
The recently discovered longitudinal displacement of the common carotid arterial wall (i.e., the motion along the same plane as the blood flow), may be associated with incident cardiovascular events and represents a novel and relevant clinical information. At present, there have only been a few studies that have been conducted to investigate this longitudinal movement. We propose here a method to assess noninvasively the wall bi-dimensional (two-dimensional [2-D], cross-sectional and longitudinal) motion and present an original approach that combines a robust speckle tracking scheme to guidance by minimal path contours segmentation. Our method is well suited to large clinical population studies as it does not necessitate strong imaging prerequisites. The aim of this study is to describe the association between the longitudinal displacement of the carotid arterial wall and cardiovascular risk factors, among which periodontal disease. Some 126 Indigenous Australians with periodontal disease, an emerging risk factor, and 27 healthy age- and sex-matched non-indigenous control subjects had high-resolution ultrasound scans of the common carotid artery. Carotid intima-media thickness and arterial wall 2-D motion were then assessed using our method in ultrasound B-mode sequences. Carotid longitudinal displacement was markedly lower in the periodontal disease group than the control group (geometric mean (IQR): 0.15 mm (0.13) vs. 0.42 mm (0.30), respectively; p < 0.0001), independent of cardiovascular risk factors, cross-sectional distensibility and carotid intima-media thickness (p < 0.0001). A multivariable model indicated that the strongest correlates of carotid longitudinal displacement in adults with periodontal disease were age (β-coefficient = -.235, p = .03), waist (β-coefficient = -.357, p = 0.001), and pulse pressure (β-coefficient = .175, p = 0.07), independent of other cardiovascular risk factors, cross-sectional distensibility and pulse wave velocity. Carotid longitudinal displacement, estimated with our approach, is impaired in the periodontal disease group, independent of established cardiovascular risk factors and other noninvasive measures of arterial stiffness, and may represent an important marker of cardiovascular risk.