Background: The association of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) with systemic calcified atherosclerosis, other than the coronary arteries, has not been clearly elucidated. We investigated the association between NAFLD and calcification in eight different vascular beds. Methods: In a community-based cohort with computed tomography scans for carotid artery, coronary artery, thoracic aorta, abdominal aorta, iliac artery, renal artery, celiac trunk, and superior mesenteric artery, the association between NAFLD and arterial calcification was evaluated with adjustment for age, sex, hypertension, dyslipidemia, diabetes, obesity, current smoking status, and family history of heart disease in the first-degree relatives. Results: In age- and sex-adjusted models, NAFLD was significantly associated with calcification in the coronary artery, carotid artery, thoracic aorta, celiac trunk, and superior mesenteric artery vascular beds (P <.05). However, adjustment for the traditional chronic venous disease risk factors attenuated the associations, except in the case of the thoracic aorta (odds ratio [OR], 1.38; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.09-1.78) and celiac trunk (OR, 2.05; 95% CI, 1.16-3.65). In addition, NAFLD was independently associated with multiarterial calcification (four or more [OR, 1.33; 95% CI, 1.01-1.74], five or more [OR, 1.46; 95% CI, 1.09-1.97], and six or more [OR, 1.58; 95% CI, 1.09-2.30] of eight evaluated arterial segments). Conclusions: The association between NAFLD and arterial calcification is mainly mediated by conventional risk factors. The independent association between NAFLD and calcification in the thoracic aorta and celiac trunk as well as in a larger number of vascular beds needs confirmation in future prospective studies in diverse populations.
- Celiac trunk
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
- Systemic atherosclerosis
- Thoracic aorta