The use of coronary artery calcium (CAC) as predictor of cardiovascular events
Coronary artery calcium (CAC) can be quickly quantified on a computed tomography (CT) and enables screening for subclinical atherosclerosis.
In a recent study it is demonstrated that among 5678 asymptomatic adults, 52% had a calcium score above zero. Those with CAC above 100 are estimated to have a 10 year-risk for acute cardiovascular events of about 24%.
Individuals with an increased CAC should be addressed with aggressive management of all cardiovascular risk factors. Statins should be initiated, as they have been documented to stabilize atheromatous plaques and reduce the progression of the disease.
It is interesting that in the study, only 26% of those with an increased CAC (above 100) were on statins.
Lifestyle modification, including smoking cessation, daily physical activity and nutrition optimization are also fundamental in the management of subclinical atherosclerosis.
Journal of the American College of Cardiology
Association of Coronary Artery Calcium Detected by Routine Ungated CT Imaging With Cardiovascular
Outcomes J Am Coll Cardiol 2023 Sep 19;82(12)1192-1202, AW Peng, R Dudum, SS Jain, DJ Maron, BN Patel, N Khandwala, D Eng, AS Chaudhari, AT Sandhu, F Rodriguez