AGE
, 36:9660
Date: 08 May 2014

Plasma NT-proBNP as predictor of change in functional status, cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in the oldest old: the Leiden 85-plus study

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Abstract

In the aging society, it is important to identify very old persons at high risk of functional decline, cardiovascular disease and mortality. However, traditional risk markers lose their predictive value with age. We investigated whether plasma N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) levels predict change in functional status, cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in very old age. Here we present an observational prospective cohort study (Leiden 85-plus Study, 1997–2004) in a population-based sample of 560 individuals aged 85 years with a 5-year complete follow-up for functional status, cardiovascular morbidity and cause-specific mortality. Median NT-proBNP for men was 351 pg/ml (cutoff values for low-medium tertiles 201 pg/ml and medium-high tertiles 649 pg/ml) and, for women, 297 pg/ml (cutoffs 204 and 519 pg/ml, respectively). During the 5-year follow-up, participants with high NT-proBNP had an accelerated cognitive decline and increase of activities of daily living (ADL) disability over time (all at p < 0.01) and an increased risk of incident heart failure [hazard ratio (HR) 3.3 (95 % confidence interval (CI) 1.8–6.1)], atrial fibrillation [HR 4.1 (2.0–8.7)], myocardial infarction [HR 2.1 (1.2–3.7)], stroke [HR 3.4 (1.9–6.3)], cardiovascular mortality [HR 5.5 (3.1–10)], non-cardiovascular mortality [HR 2.0 (1.4–3.0)] and all-cause mortality [HR 2.9 (2.1–4.0)], independent of other known risk markers. All results remained similar after exclusion of participants with heart failure at baseline. In very old age, high-NT-proBNP levels predict accelerated cognitive and functional decline, as well as cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Results suggest that NT-proBNP can help clinicians to identify very old people at high risk of functional impairment and incident cardiovascular morbidity.