Background and purpose: HIV-infected patients exhibit an increased rate of cardiac diseases, due to an elevated rate of cardiac risk factors and side effects of antiretroviral therapy. The aim of the present study was to analyze the impact of B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) in this patient population.
Patients and methods: The HIV-HEART (HIV infection and HEART disease) study is a prospective and multicenter cohort study. Outpatients with a known HIV infection were included over a 20-month recruiting period. BNP values were determined by a standardized laboratory test at study inclusion.
Results: 802 HIV-infected patients (male: 83.4%, mean age: 44.2 +/- 10.3 years) were included. The BNP concentrations (median 11.3 pg/ml; BNP < or = 100 pg/ml: 96.2%) were associated with echocardiographic parameters and with the right ventricular diameter (p = 0.02) and the systolic pulmonary arterial pressure (p = 0.01). Patients with a BNP concentration of > 50 pg/ml had a significantly higher rate of heart failure (p < 0.001), cardiomyopathy (p < 0.001), and coronary artery disease (p < 0.001).
Conclusion: The data demonstrate that BNP is suitable for the detection of cardiac disorders in HIV-infected subjects. Therefore, BNP could be an appropriate tool for a screening program for HIV-associated disorders in this patient population.