BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE - Calcified arterial plaque has been proposed as a subclinical marker of atherosclerosis. We compared it to a well-validated surrogate--carotid intimal medial thickness (IMT).
METHODS - Calcified arterial plaque was measured in 2 vascular beds (coronary and carotid) by computed tomography, and common carotid artery IMT was measured by B-mode ultrasonography, in 438 participants.
RESULTS - Calcium was positively associated with IMT (r=0.36 for coronary and r=0.45 for carotid, both P<0.0001). Correlations were attenuated with adjustment for age, sex, and diabetes.
CONCLUSIONS - Calcified plaque in the coronary and carotid arteries is moderately associated with subclinical atherosclerosis.