Differential diagnosis of acute dyspnea: the value of B natriuretic peptides in the emergency department.
QJM. 2008 Nov;101(11):831-43
Authors: Ray P, Delerme S, Jourdain P, Chenevier-Gobeaux C
Congestive heart failure (CHF) is the main cause of acute dyspnea in patients presenting to an emergency department (ED) and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) is a polypeptide, released by ventricular myocytes in direct proportion to wall tension, which lowers renin-angiotensin-aldosterone activation. For the diagnosis of CHF, both BNP and the biologically inactive NT-proBNP have similar accuracy. Threshold values are higher in an elderly population, and in patients with renal dysfunction. They might also have a prognostic value. Studies have demonstrated that the use of BNP or NT-proBNP in dyspneic patients early following admission to the ED, reduced the time to discharge and total treatment cost. BNP and NT-proBNP should be available in every ED 24 h a day, because the literature strongly suggests the beneficial impact of an early appropriate diagnosis and treatment in dyspneic patients. The purpose of this review is to indicate recent developments in biomarkers of heart failure and to evaluate their impact on clinical use in the emergency setting.
PMID: 18664534 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]