Age-related changes of regional pulse wave velocity in the descending aorta using Fourier velocity encoded M-mode.

Department of Radiology, University of Cambridge, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, United Kingdom.
Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (Impact Factor: 3.27). 09/2010; 65(1):261-8. DOI: 10.1002/mrm.22590
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) is an independent determinant of cardiovascular risk. Although aortic stiffening with age is well documented, the interaction between aging and regional aortic PWV is still a debated question. We measured global and regional PWV in the descending aorta of 56 healthy subjects aged 25-76 years using a one-dimensional, interleaved, Fourier velocity encoded pulse sequence with cylindrical excitation. Repeatability across two magnetic resonance examinations (n = 19) and accuracy against intravascular pressure measurements (n = 4) were assessed. The global PWV was found to increase nonlinearly with age. The thoracic aorta was found to stiffen the most with age (PWV [thoracic, 20-40 years] = 4.7 ± 1.1 m/s; PWV [thoracic, 60-80 years] = 7.9 ± 1.5 m/s), followed by the mid- (PWV [mid-abdominal, 20-40 years] = 4.9 ± 1.3 m/s; PWV [mid-abdominal, 60-80 years] = 7.4 ± 1.9 m/s) and distal abdominal aorta (PWV [distal abdominal, 20-40 years] = 4.8 ± 1.4 m/s; PWV [distal abdominal, 60-80 years] = 5.7 ± 1.4 m/s). Good agreement was found between repeated magnetic resonance measurements and between magnetic resonance PWVs and the gold-standard. Fourier velocity encoded M-mode allowed to measure global and regional PWV in the descending aorta. There was a preferential stiffening of the thoracic aorta with age, which may be due to progressive fragmentation of elastin fibers in this region.

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