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A Journal on Heart and Vascular Diseases

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
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Minerva Cardioangiologica 2005 August;53(4):313-20


language: English

Relationship between B - type natriuretic peptide levels and ventilatory response during cardiopulmonary exercise test in patients with chronic heart failure

Scardovi A. B., Coletta C., Aspromonte N., Perna S., Infusino T., Carunchio A., D’Errigo P., Seccareccia F., De Maria R., Greggi M., Di Giacomo T., Ricci R., Ceci V.


Aim. Aim of the study was to evaluate if brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels, a cardiac neurohormone well correlated with prognosis in chronic heart failure (CHF), are associated with enhanced ventilatory response to exercise, in ambulatory patients with intermediate peak oxygen uptake (PVO2).
Methods. Resting BNP was measured in 129 consecutive stable CHF patients with mild to moderate heart failure (90% New York Heart Association (NYHA) class II or III) and intermediate (10-18 mL/kg/min) PVO2, assessed during cardiopulmonary exercise test. Mean (SD) left ventricular ejection fraction (EF) and pulmonary systolic pressure (PAP) were 41 ± 3% and 47 ± 14 mmHg, respectively. The enhanced ventilatory response to exercise (EVR) was assessed as a slope of the relation between minute ventilation and carbon dioxide production (VE/VCO2 slope) >35.
Results. Thirtythree over 129 patients (26%) had EVR. Mean BNP plasma level was 394 ± 347 pg/mL. A significant correlation between BNP and EVR (r=0.310; p<0.01), was observed. In the logistic multivariate model, a BNP plasma level >100 pg/mL had an independent predictive value for EVR (95% IC 1.68 to 10.5, Odds Ratio 4.23, p=0.02). We found a significant correlation between BNP and PAP (r=0.390; p<0.001), and between PAP and EVR (r=0.511; p < 0.01).
Conclusion. In CHF patients with intermediate PVO2, plasma BNP is clearly related to the enhanced ventilatory response to exercise. In this subset, BNP levels could represent an effective alternative tool for the clinical assessment in patients with unreliable cardiopulmonary exercise test.

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