Association between Survival Time and Changes in NT-proBNP in Cats Treated for Congestive Heart Failure

J Vet Intern Med. 2017 May;31(3):678-684. doi: 10.1111/jvim.14690. Epub 2017 Mar 31.


Background: Reductions in N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) concentrations after treatment have been associated with improved survival in people with congestive heart failure (CHF), but have not been reported in cats with CHF.

Objectives: To evaluate changes in NT-proBNP concentrations in cats with CHF after treatment and determine whether serial NT-proBNP measurements provide prognostic information.

Animals: Thirty-one client-owned cats.

Methods: Prospective, observational study in cats with new onset CHF secondary to cardiomyopathy. Concentrations of NT-proBNP were measured within 4 hours of admission to the hospital, on the day of discharge, and at re-evaluation 7-10 days later.

Results: Median NT-proBNP concentrations decreased significantly from admission (1,713 pmol/L [range, 160-3,784 pmol/L]) to discharge (902 pmol/L [range, 147-3,223 pmol/L]); P = .005) and from admission to re-evaluation (1,124 pmol/L [range, 111-2,727 pmol/L]; P = .024). Median survival time was 109 days (range, 1-709 days), with 5 cats still alive at the time of analysis. Cats with a larger percent decrease in NT-proBNP from admission to discharge had a longer survival time (P = .048). Cats with evidence of active CHF at the time of re-evaluation (P = .010) and cats whose owners had difficulty administering medications (P = .045) had shorter survival times.

Conclusions and clinical importance: Cats with a larger percent decrease in NT-proBNP during hospitalization and no evidence of CHF at the time of re-evaluation had longer survival times. Additional studies are needed to determine whether NT-proBNP can help guide treatment in cats with CHF.

Keywords: Biomarker; Cardiomyopathy; Feline; Prognosis.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers / blood*
  • Cat Diseases / blood
  • Cat Diseases / mortality*
  • Cats
  • Female
  • Heart Failure / mortality
  • Heart Failure / veterinary*
  • Male
  • Natriuretic Peptide, Brain / blood*
  • Peptide Fragments / blood*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Survival Analysis


  • Biomarkers
  • Peptide Fragments
  • pro-brain natriuretic peptide (1-76)
  • Natriuretic Peptide, Brain