J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich). 2011;13:551–556. ©2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Hypertensive emergencies (HEs) are frequently accompanied with the release of cardiac troponin I (cTnI); however, determinants and clinical significance of cTnI elevation are largely unknown. A retrospective analysis was performed on patients (n=567) with a diagnosis of HE admitted to two tertiary care centers that primarily serve an inner-city population. Data on demographics, clinical variables, and cTnI were collected through chart review. Using regression analyses, predictors of cTnI elevation were studied and the impact of cTnI on all-cause mortality (data obtained through the Social Security Death Index) was determined. cTnI elevation was observed in 186 (32.3%) admissions with a mean peak cTnI level of 4.06±14.6 ng/mL. Predictors of cTnI were age, history of hypercholesterolemia, blood urea nitrogen level, pulmonary edema, and requirement for mechanical ventilation. During a mean follow-up period of 3.1 years, there were 211 deaths (37%). Neither the presence nor the extent of cTnI elevation was associated with mortality, while age, history of coronary artery disease, and blood urea nitrogen level were predictive of mortality. cTnI elevation commonly occurs in the setting of HEs. Despite a high incidence of adverse clinical outcomes, cTnI elevation was not an independent predictor of mortality in this population.