Systemic inflammation and functional capacity in elderly heart failure patients
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Elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) is associated with adverse outcomes in heart failure (HF) patients. Beta-blocker therapy may lower CRP levels.
Methods and results
To assess if the changes of high-sensitivity (hs) CRP levels in HF patients over 12-week titration with beta-blockers correlate with functional capacity, plasma hs-CRP levels were measured in 488 HF patients [72.1 ± 5.31 years, LVEF 40% (33/50)]. Hs-CRP, NT-proBNP and 6-min-walk-test (6MWT) were assessed at baseline and at week 12. Patients were divided based on hs-CRP changes (cut-off > 0.3 mg/dl) into low–low (N = 225), high–high (N = 132), low–high (N = 54), high–low (N = 77) groups. At baseline, median hs-CRP concentration was 0.25 (0.12/0.53) mg/dl, NT-proBNP 551 (235/1455) pg/ml and average 6MWT distance 334 ± 105 m. NT-proBNP changes were significantly different between the four hs-CRP groups (P = 0.011). NT-proBNP increased in the low–high group by 30 (− 14/88) pg/ml and decreased in the high–low group by − 8 (− 42/32) pg/ml. 6MWT changes significantly differed between groups [P = 0.002; decrease in the low–high group (− 18 ± 90 m) and improvement in the low–low group (24 ± 62 m)].
After beta-blocker treatment, hs-CRP levels are associated with functional capacity in HF patients. Whether this represents a potential target for intervention needs further study.
KeywordsInflammation Hs-CRP NT-proBNP 6-min-walk-test
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
J. Butler: Consultant to Amgen, Astra Zeneca, Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Janssen, Novartis, Relypsa, Trevena, ZS Pharma, Stealth Peptide, Medtronic, Merck, CVRx, Luitpold, and Vifor.
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