Prognostic value of troponin T in hemodialysis patients is independent of comorbidity

Kidney Int. 2001 Dec;60(6):2399-405. doi: 10.1046/j.1523-1755.2001.00076.x.


Background: Patients on long-term hemodialysis have a high mortality. Various clinical and biochemical markers are of prognostic value. Cardiac troponin T (cTnT) is a sensitive and specific marker for myocardial damage. Asymptomatic dialysis patients have a high prevalence of cTnT concentrations above the diagnostic threshold for myocardial damage. There is controversy over whether this represents a false positive cTnT or an underlying pathology with a poor outcome. It is not known whether cTnT reflects comorbidity in these patients.

Methods: A cohort of 73 long-term hospital hemodialysis patients had cTnT estimated once prior to a mid-week dialysis. Samples were analyzed using the second-generation cTnT assay from Boehringer Mannheim on an Elecsys 1010 analyzer. The standard diagnostic threshold for myocardial damage of 0.1 ng/mL was used. A commonly employed measure of comorbidity (Khan) was applied at the time cTnT was measured. Patients were followed for 15 months. Mortality was used as the clinical end point. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis was employed and differences between groups were assessed using the Cox-Mantel log-rank test.

Results: Of the 73 patients, 20 were positive for cTnT and 53 were negative, at the cut-off of 0.1 ng/mL. At fifteen months, 65% of the positive patients were dead, whereas only 15% of the negative patients were dead. Survival analysis confirmed that this difference was statistically significant (P < 0.00001), and that the effect of cTnT on survival was independent of comorbidity.

Conclusions: There is a high prevalence of positive cTnT in stable hemodialysis patients. A single estimation of cTnT in this group has significant prognostic value, independent of comorbidity.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cause of Death
  • Cohort Studies
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardium / metabolism
  • Prognosis
  • ROC Curve
  • Regression Analysis
  • Renal Dialysis* / mortality
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Troponin T / blood*
  • Troponin T / metabolism


  • Troponin T