Atherothrombosis is the leading cause of cardiovascular illness and death around the globe, according to background information in the article. To date, no single international database has characterized the atherosclerosis risk factor profile or treatment intensity of individuals with atherothrombosis. The Reduction of Atherothrombosis for Continued Health (REACH) Registry was designed to provide these data from the most geographically and ethnically diverse population yet surveyed.
Deepak L. Bhatt, M.D., of The Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues analyzed data from the REACH Registry to determine the prevalence and treatment of atherosclerosis risk factors. The Registry included 67,888 patients aged 45 years or older from 5,473 physician practices in 44 countries who had either established arterial disease (coronary artery disease [CAD], n = 40,258; cerebrovascular disease, n = 18,843; peripheral arterial disease, n = 8,273) or 3 or more risk factors for atherothrombosis (n = 12,389) between 2003 and 2004.
The researchers found that atherothrombotic patients throughout the world had similar risk factor profiles: a high proportion with hypertension (81.8 percent), hypercholesterolemia (72.4 percent), and diabetes (44.3 percent). The prevalence of overweight (39.8 percent), obesity (26.6 percent), and morbid obesity (3.6 percent) were similar in most geographic locales, but was highest in North America (overweight: 37.1 percent, obese: 36.5 percent, and morbidly obese: 5.8 percent). Patients were generally undertreated with statins (69.4 percent usage overall), antiplatelet agents (78.6 percent usage overall), an
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