Study finds aortic stiffening in children

October 25, 2010 1:53:57 PM PDT
One of the key changes in heart disease is the hardening of arteries supplying blood to the heart. It's something many doctors don't expect to see until middle age.

But, a new study of 63 children whose average age was 13 found stiffening in the aorta, the largest artery in the body.

Researchers from the British Columbia Children's Hospital say this is an early indicator or heart disease. They blame it on skyrocketing rates of obesity.

Researchers are concerned that this hardening of the arteries is going undetected and may lead to heart attacks and strokes in younger and younger people.