The metabolic syndrome and the risk of venous thrombosis: a case–control study
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OBJECTIVE: The results of recent studies have suggested that patients with idiopathic venous thromboembolism (VTE) might be at increased risk of asymptomatic atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events. The metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors for atherosclerosis. Its impact on VTE is unknown. METHODS: In a case-control study, consecutive patients with objectively confirmed deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and control subjects with objectively excluded DVT underwent clinical assessment for the presence of the metabolic syndrome according to the National Cholesterol Education Program criteria. The presence of known risk factors for DVT was documented. Patients with DVT secondary to cancer were excluded. The prevalence of the metabolic syndrome was compared between patients with idiopathic DVT and controls. RESULTS: We enrolled 93 patients with a first episode of idiopathic DVT and 107 controls. The mean age was 65.1 and 63.7 years, respectively. The metabolic syndrome was diagnosed in 50.5% of patients with idiopathic DVT and in 34.6% of controls [odds ratio (OR) 1.93; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.05, 3.56]. After adjustment for age, sex, body mass index, and smoke, the metabolic syndrome remained independently associated with idiopathic DVT (OR 1.94; 95% CI 1.04, 3.63). In patients with secondary DVT, the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome was 27%. CONCLUSIONS: The metabolic syndrome may play a role in the pathogenesis of idiopathic DVT and may act as link between venous thrombosis and atherosclerosis.
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