Usefulness of Systemic Venous Ultrasound Protocols in the Prognosis of Heart Failure Patients: Results from a Prospective Multicentric Study

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J Clin Med. 2023 Feb 6;12(4):1281. doi: 10.3390/jcm12041281.


Mortality and re-admission rates for decompensated acute heart failure (AHF) is increasing overall and risk stratification might be challenging. We sought to evaluate the prognostic role of systemic venous ultrasonography in patients hospitalized for AHF. We prospectively recruited 74 AHF patients with a NT-proBNP level above 500 pg/mL. Then, multi-organ ultrasound assessments (lung, inferior vena cava (IVC), pulsed-wave Doppler (PW-Doppler) of hepatic, portal, intra-renal and femoral veins) were performed at admission, discharge, and follow-up (for 90 days). We also calculated the Venous Excess Ultrasound System (VExUS), a new score of systemic congestion based on IVC dilatation and pulsed-wave Doppler morphology of hepatic, portal and intra-renal veins. An intra-renal monophasic pattern (area under the curve (AUC) 0.923, sensitivity (Sn) 90%, specificity (Sp) 81%, positive predictive value (PPV) 43%, and negative predictive value (NPV) 98%), a portal pulsatility > 50% (AUC 0.749, Sn 80%, Sp 69%, PPV 30%, NPV 96%) and a VExUS score of 3 corresponding to severe congestion (AUC 0.885, Sn 80%, Sp 75%, PPV 33%, and NPV 96%) predicted death during hospitalization. An IVC above 2 cm (AUC 0.758, Sn 93.l% and Sp 58.3) and the presence of an intra-renal monophasic pattern (AUC 0. 834, sensitivity 0.917, specificity 67.4%) in the follow-up visit predicted AHF-related re-admission. Additional scans during hospitalization or the calculation of a VExUS score probably adds unnecessary complexity to the assessment of AHF patients. In conclusion, VExUS score does not contribute to the guidance of therapy or the prediction of complications, compared with the presence of an IVC greater than 2 cm, a venous monophasic intra-renal pattern or a pulsatility > 50% of the portal vein in AHF patients. Early and multidisciplinary follow-up visits remain necessary for the improvement of the prognosis of this highly prevalent disease.

PMID:36835816 | DOI:10.3390/jcm12041281

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