Do We Correctly Assess the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease? Characteristics of Risk Factors for Cardiovascular Disease Depending on the Sex and Age of Patients in Latvia

ORIGINAL ARTICLE, February 2011, VOL I ISSUE III, ISSN 2042-4884
10.5083/ejcm.20424884.32 , Cite or Link Using DOI
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Andrejs Kalvelis, MD, PhD, Inga Stukena, MD, Guntis Bahs MD, PhD & Aivars Lejnieks, MD, PhD


Objective: The objective of this study was to characterise the main risk factors (RFs) for cardio-vascular disease and their correlation with sex and age in the Latvian population.

Background: The significance of the data regarding the variation of different RFs for cardiovascular disease according to sex and age is controversial.

Methods: Various RFs were analysed in 1400 outpatients (mean age, 55.2+14.4 years, 27.1% were men) depending on age and sex.

Results: Male individuals had a larger waist circumference (WC) than did female patients (99.1+14.0 vs 92.2+14.7cm, p<0.001), higher diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (83.6+9.6 vs 81.8+9.6mmHg, p=0.002), and higher levels of blood glucose (5.81+1.59 vs 5.57+1.39mmol/l, p=0.006) and triglycerides (1.85+1.37 vs 1.56+1.04mmol/l, p<0.001), but lower levels of total cholesterol (5.42+1.25 vs 5.72+1.20mmol/l, p<0.001) and high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C) (1.23+0.34 vs 1.48+0.37mmol/l, p<0.001). Compared with the younger age group (i.e., males, <45 years; females, <55 years), patients in the older age group had a significant (p<0.001 in all cases) larger WC, higher systolic blood pressure, higher DBP, higher blood glucose level, and a higher level low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, but lower HDL-C level. Age significantly correlated with all RFs in the younger-patient subgroup as well as in the female subgroup.

Conclusions: Analyses of cardiovascular RFs in different age subgroups of both sexes clearly showed the individual features of the risk profile. The new approach requires individual attention based on sex and age as well as in the management of risk. These data suggest that activities for reducing cardiovascular risk are needed in groups which are at relatively lower risk of cardiovascular disease: younger persons and in female subgroups.