Assessment of the common carotid artery wall stiffness by Shear Wave Elastography in Behcet’s disease

Deniz Alis, Emine Sebnem Memis Durmaz, Ceren Civcik, Melih Tutuncu, Sabahattin Saip, Naci Kocer, Civan Islak, Osman Kizilkilic


Aim: To evaluate endothelial dysfunction and subclinical atherosclerosis in Behcet’s disease (BD) by measuring the common carotid artery (CCA) wall stiffness and carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT).

Materials and methods: We prospectively evaluated CIMT and the CCA wall stiffness of 34 BD patients and 28 age/sex-matched controls. CIMT measurements were performed from the posterior wall of the carotid artery approximately 10 mm proximal to the initiation of the carotid bulb using B-mode ultrasound. The stiffness of the CCA was measured from the superficial wall of the CCA using shear wave elastography (SWE). SWE measurements were recorded as shear wave velocity (SWV) using m/s as a unit.

Results: The mean right (0.5±0.11 mm) and left (0.5±0.14 mm) CIMT of the patients were significantly higher compared to the mean right (0.41±0.07 mm) and left (0.41±0.11 mm) CIMT of the healthy controls (p=0.001 and p= 0.003 respectively). The mean right (3.72±0.94 m/s) and left (3.57±0.72 m/s) CCA wall stiffness of the patients were significantly higher compared to the mean right (2.42±0.49 m/s) and left (2.56±0.49 m/s) CCA wall stiffness of the controls (p<0.001 for both).

Conclusions: SWE seems to be a promising modality to evaluate endothelial dysfunction in BD by interpreting the arterial stiffness, and SWE might be an important adjunct to clinical and laboratory findings, and imaging modalities to assess cardiovascular risk in BD. Moreover, SWE evaluation of the arterial stiffness might assist us to understand pathophysiological aspects of BD.


arterial stiffness; Behcet’s disease; intima-media thickness; neuro-Behcet’s disease, SWE

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