Association between low serum magnesium levels and the extent of abdominal aortic calcification in renal transplant recipients

Abstract

Introduction – In renal transplant recipients (RTRs) vascular calcifications has been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular as well as all-cause mortality.  Recent experimental and clinical studies showed that magnesium (Mg) deficiency may be related to the progression of vascular calcification. Aim of this study was to determine the hypothetical association between Mg and vascular calcifications in RTRs. Methods – Seventy-one RTRs underwent a lateral X-ray of the lumbar spine to assess the presence of calcification of the abdominal aorta. Abdominal aortic calcium (AAC) content was graded with a score ranging from 0 to 24 points. At the same time were evaluated: carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT);  left ventricular mass index (LVMi); sCa, sPO4, sMg, uMg, PTH, HDL, LDL, blood pressure (BP). Results – AAC was correlated with: age (r=0.601; P<0.001), dialysis vintage  (r=0.314; P<0.01), sMg (r=-0.438; P<0.001), PTH (r=0.322; P<0.01), SBP (r=0.539; P<0.001), IMT (r=0.706; P<0.001), LVMi  (r=0.326; P<0.01). Serum Mg was correlated with PTH (r= -0.304; P<0.01). IMT was correlated with LVMi and SBP (r=0.330, P<0.01; r=0.494, P <0.0001; respectively). Stepwise multiple regression analysis showed that the final model contained six predictor variables for AAC (IMT, sMg, age, SBP, proteinuria, and dialysis vintage; F5,64=31.7, P<0.001; Adjusted R2 =0.718). Patients in higher AAC thirtile (8-24) were older, with longer dialysis vintage, lower sMg, higher PTH, and higher IMT values. Conclusions – Our results suggest a hypothetical interrelationship between sMg  and ACC, and IMT in RTRs.

Keywords: magnesium, vascular calcification, carotid artery intima-media thickness, renal transplantation

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Introduzione

Il rischio di malattia cardiovascolare aumenta progressivamente con il ridursi della funzione renale, arrivando ad essere di 20 volte superiore a quello che si riscontra nella popolazione generale quando viene avviata la terapia sostitutiva [1]. Il trapianto renale riduce, ma non normalizza, il rischio cardiovascolare, che risulta infatti di cinque volte maggiore a quanto riportato nella popolazione generale ed aumenta significativamente con il ridursi del funzionamento del rene trapiantato [2,3]. Ad un anno dal trapianto, su una popolazione di 19.103 pazienti con trapianto renale (RTRs), gli eventi cardiovascolari erano la causa di morte nel 21.6% della popolazione studiata [4]; con la progressiva estensione del follow-up, la prevalenza di malattia cardiovascolare aumentava fino ad arrivare ad essere la causa di morte nel 31% della popolazione con trapianto funzionante [5]. 

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