Accuracy of Doppler Ultrasonography in Measuring Radial Artery Wall Thickness in Hemodialysis Patients: Comparison with Histologic Examination

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Increased radial artery wall thickness (RAWT) is considered to be associated with early failure of radiocephalic arteriovenous fistula (AVF) as well as coronary artery atherosclerosis in hemodialysis patients. Therefore, exact measurement of RAWT by noninvasive method before the operation is very important. Objective: 

This study was designed to evaluate accuracy of Doppler ultrasonography in measuring RAWT in hemodialysis patients. Methods: 

This study enrolled 21 hemodialysis patients undergoing radiocephalic AVF operation for the first time. We measured RAWT (intima-media thickness) using high-resolution Doppler ultrasonography at the wrist before the AVF operation. We obtained specimens of the radial artery during the AVF operation and then measured RAWT by histologic examination. Results: 

Mean age of the patients was 60 ± 13 years and the number of females was 7 (33.3%). Mean values of RAWT measured by Doppler ultrasonography and histologic examination were 485 ± 93 μm (300–700 μm) and 426 ± 106 μm (300–700 μm), respectively. The value of RAWT of Doppler sonographic measurement well correlated with that of histologic measurement (r = 0.800, p < 0.001). Conclusion: 

Our data suggest that Doppler ultrasonography is an effective tool in measuring RAWT in hemodialysis patients before AVF operation.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Internal Medicine 2: Department of General Surgery 3: Department of Radiology 4: Department of Clinical Pathology, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, South Korea.

Publication date: January 1, 2004

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