Carotid Intima-Media Thickness (CIMT)


CIMT is a new noninvasive ultrasound test that is being recommended by the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology to screen for heart disease in apparently healthy individuals ages 45 or greater.  CIMT stands for Carotid Intima-Media Thickness.

Staying abreast of the latest medical techniques and protocols, Dr. Marina Johnson now offers our new Cardiact testing here at the Institute of Endocrinology and Preventive Medicine. Cardiact is a key value-added component of the Johnson Menopause Method.


This is a noninvasive test which is performed with a high-resolution B-mode ultrasound transducer. The test is safe, painless and takes about twenty minutes. After applying conducting jelly to the skin over your neck, a small hand-held transducer is applied to image the carotid arteries. The sonographer measures the combined thicknesses of the intimal and medial layers of the carotid artery walls.



The carotid arteries provide a “window” to the coronary arteries. Not only do they have similar risk factors – more importantly, the relationship between the atherosclerotic burden in a carotid artery and a coronary artery is the same as between any two coronary arteries. Thus carotic aterosclerosis provides a window to the degree of coronary atherosclerosis in an individual. CIMT is an independent predictor of future cardiovascular events, including heart attacks, cardiac death, and stroke.



CIMT is a value which tends to increase with age. Published studies of CIMT measurements in 15,000 patients ages 45 to 65 have made it possible to develop a reference range of what is “normal” at different ages. After your measurements are taken, the results are compared to this same computerized data base of 15,000 patients.

A report is generated which tells us your vascular age. If your vascular matches your chronological age or younger, then you have a lower risk for heart disease. If your vascular age exceeds your chronological age, then it alerts us to be more aggressive at controlling those risk factors associated with heart disease. Importantly, with various therapies, it is possible to achieve regression or slow down progression of the CIMT. A follow-up CIMT is done six months to a year after therapy is initiated to evaluate the effectiveness of those therapies.



√ – September 15-16, 2011 – Dr. Marina Johnson  was an invited speaker at the Cleveland HeartLab Annual Symposium; “7 Strategies For Prescribing HRT & Cardiovascular Implications.- “ A new ‘STANDARD OF CARE’)  This represents AMA Category 1 CME for Physcians – coast to coast.

Dr. Johnson is a pioneer in utilizing CIMT as part of her clinical approach to preventive cardiovascular therapies and she is developing several products to better explain how CIMT and her treatment protocols are utilized with patients at the Institute – if you are interested, please contact us to let us know your specific interest in CIMT testing for men and women.

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