(HealthDay News) – The prevalence of peripheral artery disease is increasing in both high-income countries (HIC) and low- or middle-income countries (LMIC), according to a review published online Aug. 1 in The Lancet.

F. Gerald R. Fowkes, MB, ChB, PhD, from the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review to compare the prevalence of peripheral artery disease between HIC (22 studies) and LMIC (12 studies). The studies included 112,027 participants, of whom 9,347 had peripheral artery disease.

The researchers found that the sex-specific prevalence rates were broadly similar in HIC and LMIC and in men and women, and increased with age. At 45–49 years, the prevalence in HIC was 5.28% and 5.41% for women and men, respectively, while at age 85–89 years the rates were 18.38 and 18.83, respectively. For men, the prevalence was lower in LMIC (2.89% at 45–49 years; 14.94% at 85–59 years). The rates for women in LMIC were higher than for men, especially for younger women (6.31% at aged 45–49). Important risk factors in both HIC and LMIC included smoking (meta-odds ratios [metaOR] 2.72 and 1.42, respectively), diabetes (metaOR, 1.88 and 1.47), hypertension (metaOR, 1.55 and 1.36), and hypercholesterolemia (metaOR, 1.19 and 1.14). Nearly 70% of those living with peripheral artery disease in 2010 were in LMIC. The number of individuals with peripheral artery disease increased by 28.7% and 13.1%, respectively, in LMIC and HIC.

“In the 21st century, peripheral artery disease has become a global problem,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and nutrition industries.

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