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JOURNAL ARTICLE

Prediction of atrial fibrillation after coronary artery bypass grafting by measuring atrial peptide levels and preoperative atrial dimensions

T Hakala, A Hedman, A Turpeinen, R Kettunen, O Vuolteenaho, M Hippeläinen
European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery 2002, 22 (6): 939-43
12467817

OBJECTIVE: We prospectively tested the hypothesis that atrial enlargement and increased level of atrial natriuretic peptide, N-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide and brain natriuretic peptide would predict atrial fibrillation after coronary artery bypass grafting.

METHODS: Eighty-eight elective coronary artery bypass grafting patients had preoperative echocardiographic assessment. The level of atrial natriuretic peptide, N-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide and brain natriuretic peptide were measured preoperatively. Patients were ECG- monitored during the whole hospital stay.

RESULTS: Thirty one (35.2%) patients had postoperative atrial fibrillation. In univariate analysis increased age (P=0.003), enlargement of left and right atria (P=0.002 and P=0.004, respectively) and increased level of preoperative atrial natriuretic peptide and N-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide (P=0.016 and P=0.03, respectively) were associated with postoperative atrial fibrillation. There was correlation between the age and level of N-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide (r=0.45 and P<0.001). In multivariate analysis only age and the left atrial enlargement were independent predictors of postoperative atrial fibrillation (P=0.02 and P=0.01).

CONCLUSION: Left atrial enlargement was independent predictor for postoperative atrial fibrillation. However, atrial peptides were associated with age and did not independently predict postoperative atrial fibrillation. In addition, the wide variation of the peptide levels renders the implementation of this measure in clinical practice superfluous.

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