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BNP Testing in Heart Failure - One Fits All?

Journal of Clinical and Basic Cardiology 2003; 6 (1-4): 15-18

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Keywords: BNPBrain Natriuretic PeptideHerzversagenKardiologieN-BNPBNPBrain Natriuretic Peptidecardiologyheart failureN-BNP

In patients with cardiac dysfunction natriuretic hormones originating from the ventricles (B-type natriuretic peptide and N-terminal BNP) are abnormally elevated in the peripheral circulation reflecting the degree of ventricular jeopardy and foretelling adverse outcomes including sudden death. The potential to monitor the progression of left ventricular dysfunction non-invasively has led to the development of hormone assays for BNP and N-BNP which are now available for clinical use as screening tests in the outpatient center as well as in the invasive care setting at the bedside. These tests have opened exciting new avenues to improve the diagnostic progress, to select patients for further cardiac investigations and to identify the optimum time for surgical intervention. In addition, they have proved useful in guiding intensified medical treatment.
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