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Heart. 2010 Jul;96(13):1033-6. doi: 10.1136/hrt.2009.190314. Epub 2010 May 18.

Short-term fluctuations of plasma NT-proBNP levels in patients with new-onset atrial fibrillation: a way to assess time of onset?

Author information

1
Department of Cardiology, Athens General Hospital G. Gennimatas, Athens, Greece.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of this study was to characterise short-term kinetics of plasma amino-terminal pro-B natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) levels in patients with new-onset atrial fibrillation (AF) without heart failure.

DESIGN:

Prospective cohort study.

SETTING:

Emergency departments and inpatient services of three large community hospitals.

PATIENTS:

31 consecutive patients with new-onset atrial fibrillation (<24 h before presentation) persisting at least 48 h, without evidence of heart failure.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Plasma NT-proBNP levels were obtained at presentation and then 6, 12, 18, and 24 h after presentation. A final sample was obtained 48 h after onset of AF.

RESULTS:

Mean plasma NT-proBNP levels and 95% CIs (pg/ml) during the 48-h period following onset of AF were: 0-6 h: 636 (395 to 928), 6-12 h: 1364 (951 to 1778), 12-18 h: 1747 (1412 to 2083), 18-24 h: 1901 (1549 to 2253), 24-36 h: 1744 (1423 to 2066) and 36-48 h: 1101 (829 to 1373). Mean time to peak NT-proBNP levels was 16.7 (0.7) h; 29 patients reached their peak levels within 24 h. The mean peak NT-proBNP level was significantly higher than those obtained at 0-6 h and at 36-48 h after onset of AF (p<0.001 for both). There was no correlation between ventricular rate and plasma NT-proBNP levels during any time period after onset of AF.

CONCLUSION:

In patients with new-onset AF but no clinical or radiographic evidence of heart failure, plasma NT-proBNP levels rise progressively to a peak during the first 24 h and then rapidly fall. This pattern may serve as an aid to assess the time from AF onset.

PMID:
20483904
DOI:
10.1136/hrt.2009.190314
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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