Therapeutic modification of arterial stiffness

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Therapeutic modification of arterial stiffness

Arterial stiffness has been recognized as a marker of cardiovascular disease and associated with long-term worse clinical outcomes in several populations. Age, hypertension, smoking, and dyslipidemia, known as traditional vascular risk factors, as well as diabetes, obesity, and systemic inflammation lead to both atherosclerosis and arterial stiffness. Targeting multiple modifiable risk factors has become the main therapeutic strategy to improve arterial stiffness in patients at high cardiovascular risk. Additionally to life style modifications, long-term ω-3 fatty acids (fish oil) supplementation in diet may improve arterial stiffness in the population with hypertension or metabolic syndrome. Pharmacological treatment such as renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system antagonists, metformin, and 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA reductase inhibitors were useful in individuals with hypertension and diabetes. In obese population with obstructive sleep apnea, weight reduction, aerobic exercise, and continuous positive airway pressure treatment may also improve arterial stiffness. In the populations with chronic inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, a use of antibodies against tumor necrosis factor-alpha could work effectively. Other therapeutic options such as renal sympathetic nerve denervation for patients with resistant hypertension are investigated in many ongoing clinical trials.

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