Background: Plasma C-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide (C-ANP), N-terminal ANP (N-ANP), and brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) have diagnostic utility in detecting left ventricular dysfunction. Their relative value in monitoring symptom status during the chronic treatment of congestive heart failure (CHF) remains undefined. Methods and Results: Ninety-eight subjects with CHF were evaluated. Baseline natriuretic peptides were measured by radioimmunoassay, left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was estimated with echocardiography, and New York Heart Association (NYHA) class was determined independently by attending heart failure specialists. Forty-one subjects were restudied during a 6- to 12-month follow-up period after optimizing therapy. At baseline, all natriuretic peptides and LVEF correlated positively with NYHA class (P < .005). Plasma BNP, however, correlated best with NYHA class. At follow-up, only changes of BNP correlated to changes of NYHA class (P = .04). BNP decreased (-45% ± 12%, N = 14, P = .002) in subjects whose NYHA class improved whereas BNP remained unchanged (-1% ± 10%, N = 25, P = .95) in those whose NYHA class was stable. Conclusions: This investigation demonstrates the superiority of plasma BNP as compared to ANP and LVEF in objectively assessing NYHA class during the chronic treatment of CHF. Given that clinical assessment of CHF is subjective, plasma BNP is a useful objective biomarker in monitoring human CHF in the outpatient setting.
- Heart failure
- NYHA class
- Natriuretic peptides
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine