Almost one in five patients with peripheral arterial disease will die or suffer a non-fatal stroke or heart attack or be hospitalised with a related condition with a year, a study has shown.
UK results of the REACH registry show that having atherosclerosis in two vascular beds doubles the risk of having another event.
The Reduction of Atherosclerosis for Continued Health is a global database of 68,236 patients in 44 countries, including more than 600 patients in the UK and will track patients with condition for four years to find out how it affects them.
Dr Jonathan Morrell, of East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, said: 'Atherothrombosis is a disease affecting the whole arterial system and we should be aware that having an atherothrombotic event in one vascular bed not only increases the risk of a recurrent event but also the risk of another event elsewhere.'
REACH is sponsored by the pharmaceuticals companies Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi-aventis.