To quantify cardiovascular morbidity and mortality including the incidence of vascular surgery and amputations, among individuals with symptomatic leg ischaemia.
Prospective cohort study.
Inhabitants 50-89 years of age (n = 2784) of Vadstena community, Ostergötland, Sweden, with 4 years of follow-up. 107 subjects with symptomatic leg ischaemia (SLI), selected by a postal questionnaire and ankle pressure measurements, and an age and sex matched control group of 214 individuals.
Cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, all cause mortality, surgical procedures for leg ischaemia, major amputations, ankle brachial pressure index.
Age and sex adjusted all-cause mortality risk in the SLI-group was increased by 1.9. This was most prominent among men in their sixties and women in their seventies. Cardiovascular mortality was increased by 1.9 (95% confidence interval 1.1-3.3). Relative risks for acute myocardial infarction and cerebrovascular events were 2.4 (1.1-5.1) and 1.7 (0.9-3.2), respectively. The increase in age and sex adjusted incidence of primary reconstructive surgery during the first year after initial examination was 67-fold compared to the total population of Vadstena 50-89 years old, and 18 fold for the whole observation period, while the increase in risk for major amputation during the observation period was 12-fold. Median ankle brachial index improved significantly during follow-up among the individuals alive and not subjected to vascular surgery.
Among the SLI-subjects identified in a general population, the overall risk for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality over 4 years was significantly increased compared to normals.