Local News
Eyewitness Sports
Medical Coverage
Call 12 For Action
Target 12 Investigators
More Details
What's On WPRI
What's On Fox
This Morning Weekend
Experts Online
Online Store
Chopper 12
Station Info

 May 13, 2005
New Blood Test Can Identify Heart Failure
Email to a Friend Printer Friendly Version  

A new blood test that measures a protein involved in cardiac distress is proving an "extremely accurate" way to identify congestive heart failure in emergency room patients, doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital say.

The protein, NT-proBNP, is among a class of body chemicals called natriuretic peptides that are produced when cardiac muscle is under stress, the researchers said in a statement. The test was evaluated among 600 patients who came to the hospital complaining of shortness of breath, a tell-tale sign of heart failure.

Heart failure can be difficult to diagnose, since its symptoms mimic those of other diseases and conditions, the researchers said. They found that the protein's concentrations were significantly higher in patients eventually diagnosed with heart failure, and highest in patients with the most severe symptoms.

"We believe NT-proBNP testing should now become a routine component of evaluation for patients with shortness of breath in emergency department settings," said Dr. James Januzzi Jr., the study's lead author. Results of the research will be published in the April 15 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology and have been released early on the journal's Web site.


Copyright � 2005 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

Health News | Health Encyclopedia | Quizzes and Tools | Women's Health | Men's Health | Children's Health | Seniors' Health | Diet, Fitness and Self Image | Sex and Relationships

Cardiovascular Health News  more» 
Three Heart Pills Are Better Than One: Study
FDA Warns Pfizer About Zoloft Magazine Ad
Morphine Increases Death Risk in Heart Patients: Study
Cleveland Clinic Sanctions Use of Heart-Failure Drug
Marijuana Linked to Mental Health Problems: Report
Stroke Drug Showing Success in Studies, Maker Says
Millions With Chronic Health Problems Forgo Treatment
Heart Patient's 'Trip of His Life' Ends in His Death
Teens Realize, Ignore Tanning Risks: Survey
Low Oxygen Levels May Pose Health Risk to Airline Passengers
Health Encyclopedia: Cardiovascular Health
Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)
Vasovagal Syncope
Aortic Valve Disease
Premature Ventricular Contractions
Carotid Endarterectomy
Hereditary Lymphedema
Mitral Valve Stenosis
Holter Monitoring
Send questions and comments about this website to the .
All content © Copyright 2003-2005 WorldNow, WPRI, WNAC and Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.