Prevalence of FMD

Is FMD a common disease ?

FMD is seen more commonly in women than men. It is typically diagnosed in middle-aged, white, hypertensive women. The average age at diagnosis is 50yrs. However, FMD can be diagnosed in women and men from all ethnicities, at any age, from childhood through to old age.

The prevalence of FMD in the general population is difficult to establish, as asymptomatic patients (without symptoms) may remain undiagnosed.
Also the diverse range of possible symptoms (depending on the FMD location) complicates the study of how prevalent FMD is within the general population.

What do we know?

-The prevalence of renal artery FMD varies in different studies, it is thought to be in the order of 3 to 4% amongst kidney donors, and nearer to 6% in studies including patients with renovascular hypertension.

-FMD of neck arteries is seen as frequently as in renal arteries, and is often associated (present in both locations).

-From figures collected by FMD registries, (US and European), FMD is seen in multiple locations in the majority of patients. FMD is therefore increasingly considered a systemic vascular disease.
It is because of this that when a patient is first diagnosed a one-time head to pelvis scan (CTA or if contraindicated MRA) to screen for other possible FMD lesions is recommended.