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Interact Cardiovasc Thorac Surg. 2013 Aug;17(2):371-7. doi: 10.1093/icvts/ivt186. Epub 2013 May 8.

B-type natriuretic peptide as a biochemical marker of left ventricular diastolic function: assessment in asymptomatic patients 1 year after valve replacement for aortic stenosis.

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Department of Cardiac Surgery, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy.


OBJECTIVES Left ventricular (LV) diastolic dysfunction after aortic valve replacement (AVR) carries a substantial risk of development of heart failure and reduced survival. In addition to echocardiography, B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) provides a powerful incremental assessment of diastolic function. This study evaluates BNP as a marker of LV diastolic dysfunction in a cohort of patients with preserved LV ejection fraction who underwent AVR for pure aortic stenosis and the relationship between BNP values and the grade of LV diastolic dysfunction. METHODS A total of 113 patients were included in the study. Echocardiographic evaluation was performed preoperatively, 5 days postoperatively and at 12-month follow-up, to assess LV dimensional and functional parameters. Diastolic function was labelled as normal, mild, moderate or severe dysfunction. Concomitantly, BNP levels were evaluated. RESULTS Mild to severe diastolic dysfunction occurred preoperatively in all patients. At 12-month follow-up, 65 (62.5%) patients had mild and 25 (24.1%) moderate to severe diastolic dysfunction. BNP values, categorized for quartile distribution, correlated with diastolic dysfunction grade (P<0.001 for each comparison). At receiver operating characteristic analysis, the BNP level of 120 pg/ml was 91% sensitive and 85% specific for diastolic disease, while 300 pg/ml was 80% sensitive and 91% specific for moderate or severe diastolic dysfunction. Twelve months after AVR, BNP values were strongly correlated with the significant echocardiographic parameters suggestive of diastolic dysfunction (P≤0.006 in all cases). CONCLUSIONS The BNP level following AVR is related to diastolic disease severity and may complement echocardiographic evaluation when symptoms are unclear and LV function is difficult to interpret.


Aortic valve replacement; Aortic valve stenosis; Diastolic function; Echocardiography; Natriuretic peptides

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