Relation of N-Terminal Pro-B-Type Natriuretic Peptide and Left Ventricular Diastolic Function to Exercise Tolerance in Patients With Significant Valvular Heart Disease and Normal Left Ventricular Systolic Function

Ji-Won Hwang, Sung-Ji Park, Eun Jeong Cho, Eun Kyoung Kim, Ga Yeon Lee, Sung-A Chang, Jin-Oh Choi, Sang-Chol Lee, Seung Woo Park
American Journal of Cardiology 2017 June 1, 119 (11): 1846-1853
An association between N-terminal prohormone brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) and exercise tolerance in patients with valvular heart disease (VHD) has been suggested; however, there are few data available regarding this relation. The aim of this study is to evaluate the correlation between exercise tolerance and NT-proBNP in patients with asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic significant VHD and normal left ventricular ejection fraction (LV EF). A total of 96 patients with asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic VHD and normal LV EF (≥50%) underwent cardiopulmonary exercise echocardiography. NT-proBNP levels were determined at baseline and after exercise in 3 hours. Patients were divided in 2 groups based on lower (<26 ml/kg/min, n = 47) or higher (≥26 ml/kg/min, n = 49) peak oxygen consumption (VO2 ) as a representation of exercise tolerance. In the 2 groups, after adjusting for age and gender, the NT-proBNP level after exercise in 3 hours, left atrial volume index before exercise, right ventricular systolic pressure before exercise, E velocity after exercise, and E/e' ratio after exercise varied significantly. In addition, peak VO2 was inversely related to NT-proBNP before (r = -0.352, p <0.001) and after exercise (r = -0.351, p <0.001). The NT-proBNP level before exercise was directly related to the left atrial volume index, E/e' ratio, and right ventricular systolic pressure before and after exercise. NT-proBNP after exercise was also directly related to the same parameters. NT-proBNP levels both before and after exercise were higher in the group with lower exercise tolerance. In conclusion, through the correlation among exercise tolerance, NT-proBNP, and parameters of diastolic dysfunction, we demonstrated that diastolic dysfunction and NT-proBNP could predict exercise tolerance in patients with significant VHD and normal LV EF.

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