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Keywords:

  • Biomarkers;
  • Cardiology;
  • Monitoring;
  • Risk stratification;
  • Valvular disease

Background

Identification of factors associated with decreased survival in dogs with degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD) will allow more accurate prognosis. N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) is negatively associated with survival in dogs with DMVD. In human patients, multimarker strategies provide superior risk stratification compared with single markers.

Hypothesis

High-sensitivity cardiac troponin I (hscTnI) and other clinical variables will be associated with survival time in dogs with DMVD. Measuring hscTnI and NT-proBNP in combination will be prognostically superior to measurement of either marker alone. The rate of change of these markers will vary according to cause of death.

Animals

Client-owned dogs (= 202) with DMVD of varying severity and age-matched healthy control dogs (= 30) recruited from first opinion private practice.

Methods

Prospective cohort study relating clinical variables at enrollment in dogs with DMVD to survival time (all-cause, cardiac, and noncardiac mortality). Multivariable Cox regression analysis was used to identify factors associated with survival. Measurements were obtained approximately every 6 months. Repeated measures models were constructed to assess changes over time.

Results

hscTnI, LVEDDN, heart rate, and age were independently associated with decreased survival time (all-cause mortality). Survival times were shortest in dogs in which both serum hscTnI and NT-proBNP were increased. hscTnI and NT-proBNP increased more rapidly in dogs that died of cardiac disease.

Conclusions and Clinical Importance

Serum hscTnI has prognostic value in dogs with DMVD. Measurement of NT-proBNP and hscTnI is prognostically superior to measuring either alone. Serial measurement strategies provide additional prognostic information.