Serum cortisol levels predict infarct size and patient mortality

Int J Cardiol. 1992 Nov;37(2):145-50. doi: 10.1016/0167-5273(92)90201-d.


We have investigated prospectively the serum cortisol response to acute myocardial infarction in 70 consecutive patients admitted to a coronary care unit and we have shown that the levels are significantly raised early in the course of the illness and prior to elevation of the cardiac specific enzyme fraction, creatine kinase MB. The magnitude of the cortisol response is related to the size of the ensuing infarction (rs = 0.54) as calculated from the total creatine kinase MB release (P < 0.001) and very high levels (> 2000 mumol/l) are predictive of mortality (P < 0.05). Serum cortisol levels may have a role in the early identification of myocardial infarction and in predicting those patients with a poor prognosis.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Anistreplase / therapeutic use
  • Cardiac Output / drug effects
  • Cardiac Output / physiology
  • Coronary Care Units
  • Creatine Kinase / blood
  • Female
  • Heart Failure / drug therapy
  • Heart Failure / enzymology
  • Heart Failure / mortality*
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / blood*
  • Isoenzymes
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / drug therapy
  • Myocardial Infarction / enzymology
  • Myocardial Infarction / mortality*
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Survival Rate


  • Isoenzymes
  • Anistreplase
  • Creatine Kinase
  • Hydrocortisone