Haemostatic risk factors for cardiovascular diseases.Eur Heart J 1998; 19 Suppl C:C39-43EH
Strong evidence from large observational epidemiological studies links haemostatic variables to the future risk of myocardial infarction and stroke. Recent data provide further evidence for an early involvement of haemostatic parameters in atherosclerosis. So far, a variety of markers of a procoagulatory tendency e.g. elevated fibrinogen, coagulation factor VII, factor VIII and von Willebrand factor, platelet hyperaggregation, increased plasma levels of D-dimer, and decreased fibrinolytic capacity, e.g. characterized by increased levels of PAI-1 activity and decreased t-PA concentrations have been identified prospectively. Thus, a complex disturbed haemostatic system plays an important role in the development of atherothrombotic events in several vascular beds. This review discusses the epidemiologic evidence of the association between the haemostatic system and cardiovascular disease.