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Damir Fabijanic, Marko Banic, Dusko Kardum, Zeljko Sutlic, Miroslav Simunic, Damir Bonacin, Zeljko Romic, Lidija Petricusic, Milan Kujundzic
Med Sci Monit 2009; 15(2): CR45-50
Although high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) testing is not specific for coronary atherosclerosis, elevated hs-CRP is recently accepted as an independent predictor of future cardiovascular events. Also, a connection between upper gastrointestinal lesions (UGILs) and coronary artery disease (CAD) has been observed. The authors hypothesized that UGILs increase hs-CRP in CAD patients.
Material and Method: One hundred fifty patients with stable CAD were enrolled in the study. Demographic and clinical variables and chronic medication used were gathered from a structured questionnaire. UGIL severity was determined by a modified Lanza score, H. pylori status by histology of the gastric mucosa, and the severity of CAD by a modified Gensini score. Independent correlation between hs-CRP and UGIL was tested by logistic regression analysis.
Results: The overall hs-CRP value was higher in patients with UGIL than in those with normal endoscopic results (8.14+/-4.53 mg/l vs. 4.64+/-3.06 mg/l, P<0.0001). hs-CRP level positively correlated with UGIL severity (r=0.434, P<0.0001). Correlation between UGIL and hs-CRP level remained significant after adjustment for coronary risk factors, medication used, CAD severity, and H. pylori status (standardized coefficient beta=1.272, P<0.0001). However, when hs-CRP level was used as a categorical variable, multivariate analysis revealed independent correlation only between UGIL and hs-CRP categories > or =6.1 mg/l.
Conclusions: Elevated hs-CRP levels may be predictive of UGIL; thus endoscopy should be considered in CAD patients with elevated hs-CRP even with no dyspeptic symptoms. Because CRP plays an active role in atherothrombosis, UGILs with subsequent elevated CRP levels could increase cardiovascular risk in those patients.