Echocardiographic and ultrasonographic evaluation of cardiac and vascular hypertrophy in patients with essential hypertension

C. Cuspidi, L. Boselli, R. Bragato, L. Lonati, L. Sampieri, M. Bocciolone, G. Leonetti, A. Zanchetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


High-resolution ultrasonography is a noninvasive technique that allows to investigate the cardiovascular system, in particular the wall thickness and the lumen diameter of the arteries with accuracy and reproducibility. We measured the intimamedia thickness of the common carotid artery (CCA) and of its bifurcation (BIF) in 40 patients with essential hypertension, 20 of them with left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH; age 42 ± 10 years) and 20 without LVH (age 44 ± 12 years); no other major cardiovascular risk factor was present in all the patients. Both carotid axes have been scanned from different views (anterior, lateral, posterior) on a transversal and longitudinal section using a high-resolution steerable linear array of 5.0 MHz. Carotid diameter and thickness were measured in the longitudinal section. CCA parameters were assessed 20 mm caudally to the flow divider. In patients with LVH, blood pressure (172 ± 21/108 ± 9 mm Hg) and left ventricular mass index (156 ± 38 g/m2) were significantly (p <0.01) higher than in patients without LVH (blood pressure: 158 ± 11/99 ± 12 mm Hg; left ventricular mass index: 98 ± 10 g/m2), while there was no difference in serum glycemia, triglycerides, total and fractioned cholesterol levels. The intimamedia thickness of both the CCA and BIF was significantly higher in the hypertensives with LVH (CCA: 0.85 ± 0.02 vs. 0.65 ± 0.02 mm; BIF: 0.93 ± 0.04 vs. 0.70 ± 0.03 mm, p <0.01). There was a statistically significant correlation between the carotid wall thickness and the left ventricular mass index. In conclusion, the ultrasonographic method provides direct evidence that cardiac hypertrophy is associated with vascular hypertrophy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-311
Number of pages7
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - 1992


  • Arterial wall tickness
  • Left ventricular hypertrophy
  • Ultrasonography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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