2002 Volume 9 Issue 5 Pages 213-218
We tried to investigate whether accumulation of visceral fat assessed by a simple but widely used ultrasonography was associated with common carotid atherosclerosis in women. The subjects were consecutively admitted in-patients whose body mass index was more than 22 kg/m2. Those with cardiorenal or nutritional disorders that would affect blood pressure, and lipid and glucose metabolism were excluded. An ultrasonographic evaluation with a 7.5 MHz linear type B-mode probe was performed by a specialist to determine the intima-media thickness (IMT) of the common carotid artery and maximum thickness of preperitoneal fat (Pmax) at the anterior surface of the liver and the minimum thickness of subcutaneous fat (Smin) of the abdomen. The Pmax/Smin ratio which was termed the abdominal wall fat index (AFI), was then calculated. The subjects were 241 women aged 69 ± 12 (range, 26-104) years. Multiple regression analysis using the IMT as an object variable, adjusted by various risk factors as explanatory variables showed that AFI [odds ratio, 2.995; 95% confidence interval, 1.106-8.109] was a significant independent contributing factor along with known risk factors such as age, systolic blood pressure, total-cholesterol, and HDL-cholesterol. AFI was useful in evaluating disorders of metabolism, circulation and atherosclerosis.