Cureus. 2023 Jul 25;15(7):e42449. doi: 10.7759/cureus.42449. eCollection 2023 Jul.
BACKGROUND: Chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) is a disease characterized by right heart failure following recurrent pulmonary embolism (PE). It is important to know the predictors of the development of CTEPH after PE as it is a treatable cause of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Soluble ST2 is a biomarker closely associated with heart failure and the inflammatory process. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between sST2 level and the development of CTEPH in patients with PE.
METHODOLOGY: Baseline characteristics, electrocardiographic findings, laboratory findings, transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) findings, location, and extent of involvement in CT pulmonary angiography were recorded in 100 patients with acute PE included in our prospective study. Treatment modalities and treatment durations were followed. Ventilation-perfusion scintigraphy was performed in patients with a systolic pulmonary artery pressure (sPAP) of 35 mmHg or more on TTE and residual thrombus on CT pulmonary angiography after at least three months of anticoagulant use. In the case of findings compatible with CTEPH in these examinations, patients were diagnosed with CTEPH by right heart catheterization. The sST2 levels obtained from all patients at admission were evaluated between the groups of patients with and without CTEPH.
RESULTS: CTEPH was observed in 11 of the 100 patients who participated in the trial, with a median follow-up of 284 ± 60 days. The mean age of the 11 patients with CTEPH was 67 ± 10 years; five were males and six were females. The mean age of 89 patients without CTEPH was 65 ± 18 years, 36 were males and 53 were females. The sST2 values of the group with CTEPH were found to be statistically significantly higher than those of patients without CTEPH [193.7 (184.3-244.7) vs 58.6 (29.5-122.9) p=0.020]. This receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve shows that the optimal cutoff point of sST2 levels in the prediction of CTEPH was > 157.4 with specificity of 83.7% and sensitivity of 81.8% (area under the curve = 0.783; 95% CI, 1.005-1.027; p < 0.001).
CONCLUSION: In acute PE patients, sST2 levels may be a useful biomarker to predict the development of CTEPH.