BACKGROUND: It is now well accepted that neuroendocrine activation is of pathophysiological and prognostic importance in patients with chronic heart failure (CHF). We hypothesized that the different neuroendocrine factors reflect different aspects of the cardiac dysfunction in CHF patients and that neuroendocrine profiling could be of value. In order to study this, we investigated the relationship between hormones and cardiac dimensions and function of both the right and left ventricle. METHODS: Twenty-three patients with newly diagnosed, untreated CHF were included. Right (RVEF) and left ventricular ejection fractions (LVEF) and volumes were measured by means of first-pass and equilibrium radionuclide ventriculography. RESULTS: LVEF was 0.29 (range: 0.11-0.55). Two-thirds of the patients had dilated left ventricles with volumes above upper reference limit. Right ventricular ejection fraction was normal in all subjects as well as right ventricular volumes. Likewise, on average, the lung transit time (LTT) was normal. Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) significantly correlated with LVEF, left ventricular end-diastolic volume index (LVEDVI) and left ventricular end-systolic volume index (LVESVI). Adrenaline correlated significantly with both right ventricular end-diastolic volume index and right ventricular end-systolic volume index. Lung transit time correlated with atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) and BNP (only ANP in multivariate analysis). CONCLUSIONS: (1) BNP reflects the LVEF as well as diastolic and systolic dimensions; (2) adrenaline reflects the right ventricular systolic and diastolic dimensions; and (3) ANP reflects the lung transit time. We conclude that "neuroendocrine profiling" may potentially be of diagnostic and therapeutic use.
Keywords: Aged; Chronic Disease; Echocardiography; Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay; Female; Heart Failure; Heart Ventricles; Humans; Male; Neurotransmitter Agents; Radioimmunoassay; Radionuclide Ventriculography; Regression Analysis; Severity of Illness Index; Stroke Volume; Ventricular Function, Left; Ventricular Function, Right