Background: The changes in brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels after orthotopic heart transplantation have not been previously described. The use of brain natriuretic peptide levels as a surrogate marker for cellular rejection remains controversial, with conflicting data. Methods: We prospectively evaluated the potential utility of BNP levels in the first 6 months after transplantation and sought correlation with histologic grade of rejection and hemodynamic status. Results: Thirty-five patients and 265 biopsy samples were included in the study. BNP levels did not correlate with histologic grade of rejection. They showed good correlation with central venous pressure and pulmonary capillary wedge pressure. BNP levels were elevated after transplant and showed a steep time-dependent decline. BNP levels correlated with echocardiographically derived indices of diastolic dysfunction. Conclusions: BNP levels are not a surrogate marker for rejection in the first 2 months after orthotopic heart transplantation and do not obviate the necessity for endomyocardial biopsy. Whether BNP levels have long-term prognostic significance is unclear and remains the subject of ongoing prospective study.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine