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- BMI, body mass index
- IMT, intima–media thickness
- Lp(a), lipoprotein(a)
- PHH, parental history of hypertension
Preclinical abnormalities are detectable in young normotensive individuals with a positive parental history of hypertension (PHH).1 Increased carotid intima–media thickness (IMT) is considered an early and valuable predictor of atherosclerotic disease; however, information on the effect of PHH on potential vascular structural abnormalities in young normotensive healthy subjects is limited.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the presence of carotid structural differences in normotensive young adults and children with and without PHH.
The study population comprised 29 cases (healthy subjects with PHH, 45% males, mean (SD) age 23 (5) years) consecutively recruited among the offspring (age 11–30 years) of patients with essential hypertension who had been followed at the Hypertension Outpatient Clinic of the Department of Cardiology, Cardarelli Hospital of Naples, Italy. Parental hypertension was defined as a blood pressure of at least 140/90 mm Hg, measured on three different days in the supine position by sphygmomanometry. The control group consisted of 29 age-matched (+1 year) and sex-matched healthy subjects without PHH (parents not on antihypertensive drugs and blood pressure values <140/90 mm Hg at repeated examinations); they were offspring of patients admitted to the same hospital for a wide spectrum of acute illnesses unrelated to essential hypertension or hospital workers.
To minimise the confounding effects of other known cardiovascular risk factors, we excluded individuals with a parental history of coronary, cerebral or peripheral arterial disease and/or diabetes mellitus. The …