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Lifetime Risk Estimates by Sex and Race/Ethnicity
May 3, 2023

As it is well-known cardiovascular diseases are often linked to numerous factors such as genetics, geographic regions population, and age. But although PAD is directly related to such conditions, there are no available estimates of lifetime risk - an indicator for communicating long‐term risk and estimating the future burden of disease in populations.

However, in a publication in the Journal of American Heart Association, data used from 6 US community‐based groups with over 35K participants, had shown some results. It was estimated lifetime risk of PAD by sex and among 3 racial/ethnic groups (whites, blacks, and Hispanics).

Key findings from the research

The study highlights the following:

These results were estimated based on two factors - PAD prevalence and relative risk of mortality for PAD, as well as national mortality data.

Prevalence of PAD in African- American ethnic group

Although guidelines do not specify that people from black races have an increased possibility of developing PAD, the results suggest an increased lifetime risk for them, compared to white and Hispanics. To obtain more precise results in the research were used pooled data from logistic regression models were. They showed age as a strong factor of prevalent PAD, but also that blacks have 2 times higher odds than the other 2 racial/ethnic groups in either sex at any age.

The results may be partially explained also with socioeconomic factors such as education, income, neighborhood deprivation, and lifestyle factors such as smoking, for instance. Nevertheless, the pattern is consistent even in previous studies that show there was no evidence of a greater susceptibility of blacks to cardiovascular disease risk factors as a reason for their higher PAD prevalence

The sex factor in developing PAD

The prevalence of PAD in women is a little higher than that in men, especially those below 65 years of age. Some studies suggest this is due to some sex differences in ankle blood pressure because of shorter height in females. However, the gap is considerably smaller than that between different ethnicities. According to this study, ABI <0.90 conferred a 2‐fold higher risk of mortality as compared with the reference category of 1.1 to 1.2 in both men and women. That’s why sex cannot be considered a separate factor, and lifetime risk should be evaluated in both sexes.

Of course, the topic could be expanded and there are more studies to be conducted. But these results suggest the importance of healthcare professionals keeping in mind certain disproportional risks between different ethnicities and genders.

The link to the whole study:


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