Sex and left ventricular volume predict survival in heart transplant candidates with peak oxygen uptake between ten and fourteen milliliters per kilogram per minute

T G Di Salvo, T M Koelling, J Muller-Ehmsen, U Schmidt, M J Semigran, G W Dec
Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation 1997, 16 (8): 869-77

BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to identify predictors of survival in patients referred for heart transplantation evaluation who had a peak oxygen uptake of 10 to 14 ml/kg/min measured during initial cardiopulmonary exercise testing.

METHODS: Seventy-two patients were identified retrospectively from a database of 304 patients who underwent heart transplantation evaluations at our center from 1985 to 1995. All 72 patients underwent right-sided heart catheterization and first-pass right and left ventricular radionuclide ventriculography during cardiopulmonary exercise testing.

RESULTS: There were 14 women and 58 men in the study (mean age 52 +/- 9 years, 80% male, 79% New York Heart Association class III/IV, left ventricular ejection fraction of 0.24 +/- 0.9, and left ventricular end-diastolic volume index of 144 +/- 59 ml). During a mean follow-up of 19 +/- 23 months, two women and 32 men (47%) reached the combined end point of death (n = 20) or pretransplantation admission for inotropic or mechanical support (n = 14). For the entire cohort, analysis of clinical, ventriculographic, and exercise parameters identified female sex, younger age, and age/ sex-adjusted peak oxygen uptake as independent predictors of survival. In men only, age, left ventricular end-diastolic volume index, and age/sex adjusted peak oxygen uptake were independent predictors of survival.

CONCLUSIONS: Among patients referred for heart transplantation evaluation with a peak oxygen uptake between 10 to 14 ml/kg/min, younger age, female sex, and higher age/ sex-adjusted peak oxygen uptake predict longer survival to the combined end point of death or pretransplantation admission for inotropic or mechanical support. These measures may be useful in additional risk stratification of such patients.

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