This study aimed to investigate microvascular differences in individuals with obesity at risk for developing cardiovascular disease.
In this cross-sectional Netherlands Epidemiology of Obesity study, participant sublingual microcirculation was assessed with a newly developed GlycoCheck software (Microvascular Health Solutions Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah), which integrates red blood cell velocity within the smallest capillaries (4-7 µm) and feed vessels (>10 µm). Framingham Risk Score was used to calculate 10-year cardiovascular risk, divided into low-, intermediate-, and high-risk groups. ANOVA was used to evaluate microvascular differences among the groups.
A total of 813 participants were included. The high-risk group (n = 168) was characterized by differences in the microvasculature compared with the low-risk group (n = 392): the high-risk group had a 49% reduction in the number of smallest capillaries and a 9.1-µm/s (95% CI: 5.2-12.9) higher red blood cell velocity in the feed vessels. No differences in velocity-corrected perfused boundary regions were found.
It was observed that, with adding red blood cell velocity to the software, sidestream dark field imaging is able to detect microcirculatory differences in a cohort of individuals with obesity at risk for developing cardiovascular disease.