Validity of Amino Terminal pro-Brain Natiuretic Peptide in a Medically Complex Elderly Population

Mazhar A Afaq, Azadeh Shoraki, Oleg Ivanov, Janardhan Srinivasan, Lawrence Bernstein, Stuart Zarich

Abstract


Background: The routine use of natiuretic peptides in severely dyspneic patients has recently been called into question. We hypothesized that the diagnostic utility of Amino Terminal pro Brain Natiuretic Peptide (NT-proBNP) is diminished in a complex elderly population.

Methods: We studied 502 consecutive patients in whom NT-proBNP values were obtained to evaluate severe dyspnea in the emergency department. The diagnostic utility of NT-proBNP for the diagnosis of congestive heart failure (CHF) was assessed utilizing several published guidelines, as well as the manufacturer’s suggested age dependent cut-off points.

Results: The area under the receiver operator curve (AUC) for NT-proBNP was 0.70. Using age-related cut points, the diagnostic accuracy of NT-proBNP for the diagnosis of CHF was below prior reports (70% vs. 83%). Age and estimated creatinine clearance correlated directly with NT-proBNP levels, while hematocrit correlated inversely. Both age > 50 years and to a lesser extent hematocrit < 30% affected the diagnostic accuracy of NT-proBNP, while renal function had no effect. In multivariate analysis, a prior history of CHF was the best predictor of current CHF, odds ratio (OR) = 45; CI: 23-88.

Conclusions: The diagnostic accuracy of NT-proBNP for the evaluation of CHF appears less robust in an elderly population with a high prevalence of prior CHF. Age and hematocrit levels, may adversely affect the diagnostic accuracy off NT-proBNP.



doi:10.4021/jocmr606w

 


Keywords


Congestive Heart Failure; Natriuretic peptides; Diagnosis; Elderly Patients

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