Background: Alteration of arterial elastic properties is known to occur in patients with arteritis. Velocity vector imaging (VVI) is a new technology to assess multi-dimensional regional mechanics in terms of velocity, strain, strain rate and displacement. The aim of the present study was to investigate the mechanical properties of the common carotid artery using VVI in patients with Takayasu's arteritis (TA). Methods and Results: Vascular properties of the carotid artery were assessed in 12 patients with TA (11 female, age 38±10 years) and 12 healthy age- and sex-matched controls. Velocity, strain, strain rate and displacement were decreased significantly in TA compared with controls. Standard deviations, however, of time to peak velocity (Tv), strain (Ts), strain rate (Tsr), and displacement (Td) of multiple arterial wall segments were significantly higher in TA (P<0.0001), suggesting disturbance of symmetric arterial expansion during systole. The severity of carotid stenosis was also positively correlated with standard deviations of Tv, Ts, Tsr and Td. Conclusions: Arterial assessment using VVI may represent a new noninvasive method for quantifying vascular alteration associated with arteritis.
- Carotid arteries
- Takayasu's arteritis