Background: Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death worldwide. Aging is an unavoidable coronary risk factor and is associated with dermatological signs that could be a marker for increase coronary risk. We tested the hypothesis that hair graying as a visible marker of aging is associated with risk of coronary artery disease independent of chronological age
Method: This prospective observation study included 545 adult males who underwent a multi-slice computed tomography coronary angiography (MSCT CA) for suspicion of coronary artery disease (CAD), patients were divided into different subgroups according to the percentage of gray/white hairs (Hair Whitening Score, HWS: 1-5) and to absence or presence of CAD
Results: CAD was prevalent in 80% of our studied population, (46.8 %) had three vessels disease with mean age of 53.2 ± 10.7 yrs. Hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidemia were more prevalent in CAD group (P=0.001, P=0.001, and P=0.003 respectively). Patients with CAD had statistically significant higher HWS (3 or more, predominately white hair), (32.1 % Vs 60.1 %, p < 0.001) and significant coronary artery calcification (<0.001). Multivariate regression analysis showed that age (OR: 2.40, 95% CI: [1.31-4.39], p= 0.004), Hair Whitening Score (OR: 1.31, 95% CI: [1.09-1.57], p= 0.004), hypertension (OR: 1.63, 95% CI: [1.03-2.58], p=0.036), and dyslipidemia (OR: 1.61, 95% CI: [1.02-2.54], p=0.038) were independent predictors of presence of atherosclerotic CAD and only age (p < 0.001) was found as independent predictor of hair graying.
Conclusion: In our population, high hair whitening score was associated with increased risk of CAD independent of chronological age and other established cardiovascular risk factors