Academic Editor: Takatoshi Kasai
Predicting the occurrence of organ damage and future cardiovascular events is critical to improving patient prognosis through early personalized treatment. Although many tools have been developed and used for individuals’ cardiovascular risk, they have limitations and unmet needs for improved risk stratification. For this purpose, arterial stiffness information can be practical. Arterial walls stiffen with age or prolonged exposure to various noxious stimuli such as high blood pressure, hyperglycemia, inflammation and oxidative stress. Differently from several methods of measuring arterial stiffness, pulse wave velocity (PWV) is most widely used for its non-invasive and easy measurement. It is well authorized that information on arterial stiffness is associated with the development of future cardiovascular events, independent from traditional cardiovascular risk factors, in various patient groups with specific diseases along with the general population. Moreover, when this information of arterial stiffness is associated with other risk stratification tools, it is possible to predict individuals’ cardiovascular risk easier. Herein, we will review the incremental value of the measurement of arterial stiffness in cardiovascular risk assessment when combined with other risk factors such as traditional risk factors, biomarkers, other vascular testing and non-invasive cardiac imaging.