Can We Tackle with Vascular Calcification and Arterial Stiffness in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease?

Eirini Stavrinou, Aikaterini Papagianni*, Charalambos Koumaras, Panagiotis Pateinakis, Georgios Efstratiadis
Department of Nephrology, Medical School, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Hippokration Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece

© 2013 Stavrinou et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Department of Nephrology, Hippokration Hospital, 50 Papanastasiou Str, 54642 Thessaloniki, Greece; Tel: 0030 2310 992856; Fax: 0030 2310 892382; Email: and


Cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of increased morbidity and mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease and is attributed to early and accelerated atherosclerosis and arteriosclerosis observed in this patient population. Vascular calcifications, particularly of the media, are commonly found in chronic uremia and are a major contributor to arteriosclerosis and increased arterial stiffness. Epidemiologic data support the correlation of vascular calcification and arterial stiffness to adverse cardiovascular outcomes and mortality. Experimental evidence has shed light on the pathogenetic mechanisms of vascular calcification and arterial stiffness and their relation to impaired bone metabolism and imbalance between promoters and inhibitors of extra-osseous bone formation. However further research is needed to clarify their exact contribution and whether their targeting could significantly affect vascular calcification and arterial stiffening and could improve survival in chronic kidney disease patients.

Keywords: Arterial stiffness, bone metabolism, cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, vascular calcification.