Imaging of atherosclerotic plaques in obesity: Excessive fat accumulation, plaque progression and vulnerability

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Obesity is becoming a major health issue in the world due to sedentary lifestyles and increasing intake of Western diets. Obesity is associated with metabolic abnormalities and atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases. Adipose tissue has been increasingly considered to play a critical role in inducing metabolic disturbances and promoting atherogenesis. Arterial wall imaging permits direct visualization of atheroma burden in various vascular beds. In addition, recent advances in imaging technology help characterize components, microstructures and functional features of atherosclerotic plaques. These imaging modalities have contributed to elucidating factors associated with atherosclerosis in obese patients. Also, it provides opportunities to evaluate the effect of novel therapies on plaques in the setting of obesity. The findings of recent imaging studies and the clinical implications will be reviewed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1471-1489
Number of pages19
JournalExpert Review of Cardiovascular Therapy
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Adipose tissue
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Imaging
  • Obesity
  • Plaque vulnerability

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