Association of electrocardiographic left ventricular hypertrophy with incident cardiovascular disease in Japanese older hypertensive patients

Eijiro Sugiyama Edison, Yuichiro Yano, Satoshi Hoshide, Kazuomi Kario
American Journal of Hypertension 2015, 28 (4): 527-34

BACKGROUND: Our aim was to assess whether electrocardiographic left ventricular hypertrophy (ECG-LVH) is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) events, independent of 24-hour blood pressure (BP) and circulating levels of norepinephrine and hemostatic factors.

METHODS: In 514 older hypertensive patients (mean age 72.3 years; 37% men), we assessed ambulatory BP values, circulating levels of norepinephrine and hemostatic factors (plasma fibrinogen, prothrombin fragment 1+2 (F1+2), von Willebrand factor (vWF), and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1)), and the presence or absence of ECG-LVH (Sokolow-Lyon voltage ≥ 3.5 mV). The incidence of CVD events (i.e., myocardial infarction and stroke) was prospectively ascertained.

RESULTS: During an average 41 months of follow-up (1,751 person-years), 43 stroke and 3 myocardial infarction events occurred. At baseline, patients with ECG-LVH had higher mean 24-hour BP (148.8/83.8mm Hg vs. 135.7/77.2mm Hg) and circulating norepinephrine levels (404.6 pg/ml vs. 336.3 pg/ml) compared to those without ECG-LVH; the differences remained unchanged after adjustment for age, gender, smoking status, presence of diabetes, and antihypertensive medication uses at follow-up time (all P < 0.01). Cox proportional hazards models suggested that the hazard ratio (HR; 95% confidence interval (CI)) of CVD events for those with ECG-LVH was 4.4 (2.3-8.2), and the association between ECG-LVH and incident CVD events remained significant after adjustment for high 24-hour BP (≥130/80mm Hg), nocturnal SBP, circulating norepinephrine and fibrinogen levels (HRs, 3.5-4.2, all P < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: In older hypertensive patients, ECG-LVH was associated with a higher risk of CVD events, independent of ambulatory BP parameters and circulating norepinephrine and fibrinogen levels.

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