Association between the metabolic syndrome, its individual components, and unprovoked venous thromboembolism: Results of a patient-level meta-analysis

Walter Ageno, Matteo N.D. Di Minno, Cihan Ay, Moon Ju Jang, John Bjarne Hansen, Lyn M. Steffen, Amparo Vayà, Marcello Rattazzi, Ingrid Pabinger, Doyeun Oh, Giovanni Di Minno, Sigrid K. Braekkan, Mary Cushman, Elena Bonet, Paolo Pauletto, Alessandro Squizzato, Francesco Dentali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Objective-The metabolic syndrome (MetS) may contribute to the pathogenesis of venous thromboembolism (VTE), but this association requires additional investigation.

Approach and Results-We performed a patient-level meta-analysis of case-control and cohort studies that evaluated the role of MetS and risk of unprovoked VTE. For case-control studies, odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated using logistic regression analysis to estimate the influence of individual variables on the risk of VTE; ÷2 tests for trend were used to investigate the effect of increasing number of components of MetS on the risk of VTE and to explore the influence of abdominal obesity on this relationship. For cohort studies, hazard ratios and 95% confidence interval were calculated using multivariable Cox regression analysis. Six case-control studies were included (908 cases with unprovoked VTE and 1794 controls): in multivariate analysis, MetS was independently associated with VTE (odds ratio, 1.91; 95% confidence interval, 1.57-2.33), and both MetS and abdominal obesity were better predictors of unprovoked VTE than obesity defined by the body mass index. Two prospective cohort studies were included (26 531 subjects and 289 unprovoked VTE events): age, obesity, and abdominal obesity, but not MetS were associated with VTE.

Conclusions-Case-control but not prospective cohort studies support an association between MetS and VTE. Abdominal adiposity is a strong risk factor for VTE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2478-2485
Number of pages8
JournalArteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.


  • Metabolic syndrome X
  • Obesity
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Venous thromboembolism
  • Venous thrombosis


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