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Keywords:

  • Biomarker;
  • Companion animals;
  • Feline;
  • Myocardial injury;
  • Prognostic significance

Background

Myocardial injury detected by cardiac troponin I and T (cTnI and cTnT) in cardiac disease is associated with increased risk of death in humans and dogs.

Hypothesis

Presence of myocardial injury predicts long-term death in cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), and ongoing myocardial injury reflects change in left ventricular wall thickness over time.

Animals

Thirty-six cats with primary HCM.

Methods

Prospective cohort study. Cats with HCM were included consecutively and examined every 6 months. Echocardiography, ECG, blood pressure, and serum cTnI and cTnT were evaluated at each visit. Cox proportional hazards regression analysis was performed to evaluate prognostic potential of serum troponin concentrations at admission and subsequent examinations. Correlations were used to examine associations between troponin concentrations and cardiac hypertrophy.

Results

Troponin concentrations at admission were median [range] 0.14 [0.004–1.02] ng/mL for cTnI, and 13 [13–79.5] ng/L for cTnT. Both were prognostic for death (P = .032 and .026) as were the last available concentrations of each (P = .016 and .003). The final cTnT concentration was a significant predictor of death even when adjusting for the admission concentration (P = .043). In a model containing both markers, only cTnT remained significant (P = .043). Left ventricular free wall thickness at end-diastole (LVFWd) at admission was correlated with cTnI at admission (r = 0.35, P = .035), however no significant correlations (r = 0.2–0.31, P = .074–.26) were found between changes in troponin concentrations and left ventricular thickness over time.

Conclusions and Clinical Importance

Myocardial injury is part of the pathophysiology leading to disease progression and death. Low sensitivities and specificities prevent outcome prediction in individual cats.