Updating the role of natriuretic peptide levels in cardiovascular disease.
Postgrad Med. 2011 Nov;123(6):102-13
Authors: Gopal DJ, Iqbal MN, Maisel A
Heart disease affects 1 in 3 individuals in the United States, and the prevalence of heart failure (HF) is increasing exponentially. Although our understanding of the disease progression of congestive HF (CHF) has advanced, refining the areas of diagnosis, risk stratification, prognosis, and treatment is still needed. The natriuretic peptides, specifically B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) and N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP), have shown promise in clinical practice. Brain natriuretic peptide is released from cardiac ventricular myocytes in response to volume or pressure overload. Rapid measurement of plasma BNP or NT-proBNP has been shown to increase the diagnostic accuracy of HF exacerbations. A cutoff value of 100 pg/mL has a sensitivity and specificity of 90% and 73%, respectively, according to the Breathing Not Properly Study. In addition, BNP and NT-proBNP have been considered independent predictors of adverse outcome. One study calculated a 35% increase in risk of death due to HF for every 100-pg/mL increase in BNP level. Lastly, natriuretic peptides have been known to decrease following medical therapy of HF, suggesting the role of their measurement in monitoring inpatient disease progression and outpatient medical programs. The future of natriuretic peptides lies in risk stratification in other cardiac diseases, such as acute coronary syndrome, and possibly determining severity of valvular disease. Although there is substantial work done in elucidating the power of natriuretic peptides in clinical practice, more research is necessary to reach a consensus regarding how to appropriately utilize them in treatment regimens.
PMID: 22104459 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]