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Patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have increased risk for atherosclerosis. The cause of increased cardiovascular risk is not fully understood. Chronic inflammatory process may predispose to atherosclerosis. We aimed primarily to investigate subclinical atherosclerosis in patients with IBD, by measuring carotid femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV), carotid intima media thickness, and flow-mediated dilatation compared with matched normal controls. Methods: Patients with IBD were recruited among individuals proven to have Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). To exclude any interference of confounding factors for endothelial dysfunction or atherosclerosis, we studied a specifically selected group with no additional cardiovascular risk. PWV, carotid intima media thickness, and flow-mediated dilatation levels were measured in all patients and controls. Results: The carotid femoral PWV levels were 8.13 ± 1.61 m/sec in the patients with UC, 8.16 ± 1.74 m/sec in the patients with CD, and 6.85 ± 0.95 m/sec in the healthy subjects. The levels of carotid femoral PWV were significantly higher in patients with CD and UC than control group (P < 0.001). Flow-mediated dilatation levels were significantly decreased in patients with UC and CD (9.6% ± 5.1% versus 108% ± 4.4%) when compared with control subjects (15.1% ± 9.7%) (P= 0.004). No significant difference in carotid intima media thickness was detected between UC, CD, and control groups (P= 0.152). Conclusions: This study suggests that patients with IBD without traditional cardiovascular risk factors have increased risk of endothelial dysfunction and atherosclerosis. © 2015 Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America, Inc. Source

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