Atherosclerotic Burden and Vascular Risk in Stroke Patients With Atrial Fibrillation

Jong Ho Park, Jong Won Chung, Oh Young Bang, Gyeong Moon Kim, Kang Ho Choi, Man Seok Park, Joon Tae Kim, Yang Ha Hwang, Tae Jin Song, Yong Jae Kim, Bum Joon Kim, Sung Hyuk Heo, Jin Man Jung, Kyungmi Oh, Chi Kyung Kim, Sungwook Yu, Kwang Yeol Park, Jeong Min Kim, Jay Chol Choi, Woo Keun Seo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: Data on the effect on vascular outcomes of concomitant atherosclerotic vascular disease (ASVD) with atrial fibrillation (AF) after stroke are limited. This study evaluated the effect of ASVD with AF versus AF only on the risk of vascular events. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed a prospectively registered multicenter database involving 3213 stroke patients with AF. ASVD included extracranial atherosclerosis measured in the proximal portion of the internal carotid artery, intracranial atherosclerosis (all ≥50% stenosis), coronary artery disease, and peripheral artery disease and was categorized into 4 strata depending on the number of ASVDs (0, 1, 2, and 3-4). The independent associations of ASVD with major adverse cardiovascular events, stroke, and all-cause death were assessed. Results: A total of 2670 patients were included (mean age, 73.5±9.8 years; median CHA2DS2-VASc score, 5; interquartile range, 4-6). During the follow-up (mean, 1.7 years), a total of 672 (25.2%) major adverse cardiovascular events, 170 (6.4%) stroke events, and 501 (18.8%) all-cause deaths were noted. The adjusted hazard ratio for major adverse cardiovascular events versus no ASVD was 1.25 (95% CI, 1.00-1.56) for ASVD 1, 1.34 (95% CI, 1.02-1.76) for ASVD 2, and 1.93 (95% CI, 1.24-2.99) for ASVD 3-4. The adjusted hazard ratio for all-cause death versus no ASVD was 1.32 (1.01-1.74), 1.47 (1.06-2.03), and 2.39 (1.47-3.89), respectively. Among ASVD components, the presence of symptomatic or asymptomatic extracranial atherosclerosis was a more potent predictor of major adverse cardiovascular events (1.27 [1.05-1.54]) and all-cause death (1.45 [1.17-1.81]). Conclusions: ASVD burden with AF can be a cumulative marker of a high risk for untoward vascular outcomes. Among ASVD components, extracranial atherosclerosis seems to have a predominant effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1662-1672
Number of pages11
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 2021

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© 2021 Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. All rights reserved.


  • atherosclerotic disease
  • atrial fibrillation
  • carotid artery stenosis
  • outcome
  • stroke


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