Obstructive Sleep Apnea Effects of Continuous Positive Airway Pressure on Cardiac Remodeling as Assessed by Cardiac Biomarkers, Echocardiography, and Cardiac MRI

Department of Internal Medicine, St Boniface General Hospital, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Chest (Impact Factor: 7.13). 08/2011; 141(3):674-81. DOI: 10.1378/chest.11-0615
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Although previous echocardiographic studies have demonstrated short-term improvement in cardiovascular remodeling in patients with OSA receiving continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, a long-term study incorporating cardiac biomarkers, echocardiography, and cardiac MRI (CMR) has not been performed to date.
A prospective study of 47 patients with OSA was performed between 2007 and 2010. Cardiac biomarkers, including C-reactive protein (CRP), N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP), and troponin T (TnT), were measured at baseline and serially over 1 year. All patients underwent baseline and serial transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) and CMR to assess cardiac remodeling.
Following 12 months of CPAP therapy, levels of CRP, NT-proBNP, and TnT did not change significantly from normal baseline values. As early as 3 months after initiation of CPAP, TTE revealed an improvement in right ventricular end-diastolic diameter, left atrial volume index, right atrial volume index, and degree of pulmonary hypertension, which continued to improve over 1 year of follow-up. Finally, left ventricular mass, as determined by CMR, decreased from 159 ± 12 g/m(2) to 141 ± 8 g/m(2) as early as 6 months into CPAP therapy and continued to improve until completion of the study at 1 year.
Both systolic and diastolic abnormalities in patients with OSA can be reversed as early as 3 months into CPAP therapy, with progressive improvement in cardiovascular remodeling over 1 year as assessed by both TTE and CMR.

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