Background: The clinical determinants of increased cardiac troponin T (cTnT) in patients with acute cardiogenic pulmonary edema are not well defined, and the ability of this marker to predict long-term mortality has not yet been documented.
Methods: Eighty-four patients with acute cardiogenic pulmonary edema without acute myocardial infarction were prospectively enrolled. cTnT was measured in samples obtained 6 and 12 hours after admission.
Results: cTnT levels of 0.1 ng/mL or greater were found in 46 patients (55%). Thirty-two patients (38%) died during follow-up. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for cTnT was 0.70 and 0.69 at 6 and 12 hours (P =.47), and the cTnT cutoff value of 0.1 ng/mL was 66% and 69% sensitive and 63% and 71% specific, respectively, in predicting subsequent mortality. Patients were assigned to group 1 if they had cTnT lower than 0.1 ng/mL and to group 2 if they had cTnT levels of 0.1 ng/mL or greater. A history of coronary artery disease was present in 72% of group 2 versus 50% of group 1 patients (P =.04). Patients in group 2 were also older than those in group 1 (mean age, 68 years vs 61 years; P =.021). The 3-year survival in group 1 was 76% compared with 29% in group 2 (log-rank test, P <.001). In a Cox proportional hazards model, elevated cTnT emerged as the only prognostic marker of long-term mortality (risk ratio [RR] = 2.31; 95% CI, 1.011-5.280; P =.047).
Conclusions: A cTnT level of 0.1 ng/mL or greater was associated with poor long-term survival and emerged as a powerful independent predictor of mortality in patients with acute cardiogenic pulmonary edema.