Donor cardiac troponin-I: a biochemical surrogate of heart function

Department of Heart and Lung Transplantation, University Hospital Birmingham NHS Trust, Birmingham, UK.
European journal of cardio-thoracic surgery: official journal of the European Association for Cardio-thoracic Surgery (Impact Factor: 3.3). 04/2009; 36(2):286-92; discussion 292. DOI: 10.1016/j.ejcts.2009.02.031
Source: PubMed


Cardiac troponin-I (cTnI) levels in the potential heart transplant donor may be a marker of heart dysfunction and predictive of recipient outcome. We studied the prevalence of cTnI elevation, its association with heart function and usability and its relationship with the time duration from coning.
In a prospective study, cTnI measurement, Swan-Ganz catheterisation and transthoracic echocardiography were performed at initial assessment in 79 potential heart donors (mean age 43 +/- 13.1 years). All donors were then managed according to a strict algorithm to optimise cardiac function, some receiving hormonal therapy as part of a randomised trial. Donor heart suitability for transplantation was assessed after 7 h of management. The association of cTnI with initial functional indices was assessed and outcome compared for donors categorised according to cTnI level < or = 1 microg l(-1) or >1 microg l(-1).
Serum cTnI levels negatively correlated with initial cardiac index (CI) (p = 0.003), right (p < 0.001) and left ventricular ejection fraction (p = 0.001) and positively with LV Tei index (p = 0.003). Serum cTnI was >1 microg l(-1) in 29/79 donors. Higher CVP (10 +/- 5.1 vs 7.9 +/- 2.9; p = 0.026) and PAWP (12 +/- 5.4 vs 8.1 +/- 3.1; p = 0.002), lower cardiac index (2.7 +/- 1.1 vs 3.6 +/- 0.9; p = 0.001) and fractional shortening (p < 0.01) and worse wall motion score index (p < 0.01) were observed in the cTnI >1 microg l(-1) group. CTnI and functional markers correlated with the time duration from coning.
The donor cTnI level represents a biochemical surrogate of functional donor heart assessment. High cTnI is associated with worse donor heart function and may act as a prompt for detailed assessment and optimisation.

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