Risks of incident heart failure with preserved ejection fraction in Chinese patients hospitalized for cardiovascular diseases

J Geriatr Cardiol. 2019 Dec;16(12):885-893. doi: 10.11909/j.issn.1671-5411.2019.12.005.


Background: Endogenous aldehyde damages DNA and potentiates an ageing phenotype. The aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2) rs671 polymorphism has a prevalence of 30%-50% in Asian populations. In this study, we aimed to analyze risk factors contributing to the development of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) along with the genetic exposure in Chinese patients hospitalized with cardiovascular diseases (CVD).

Methods: From July 2017 to October 2018, a total of 770 consecutive Chinese patients with normal left ventricular ejection fractions (LVEF) and established CVD (hypertension, coronary heart diseases, or diabetes) were enrolled in this prospective cross-sectional study. HFpEF was defined by the presence of at least one of symptom (dyspnoea and fatigue) or sign (rales and ankle swelling) related to heart failure; N-terminal pro-B-Type natriuretic peptide (NT pro-BNP ≥ 280 pg/mL); LVEF ≥ 50%; and at least one criterion related to elevated ventricular filling pressure or diastolic dysfunction (left atrial diameter > 40 mm, E/E' ≥ 13, E'/A' < 1 or concurrent atrial fibrillation). Logistic regression was performed to yield adjusted odds ratios (ORs) for HFpEF incidence associated with traditional and/or genetic exposures.

Results: Finally, among 770 patients with CVD, 92 (11.9%) patients were classified into the HFpEF group according to the diagnostic criteria. The mean age of the participants was 67 ± 12 years, and 278 (36.1%) patients were females. A total of 303 (39.4%) patients were ALDH2*2 variant carriers. In the univariate analysis, eight exposures were found to be associated with HFpEF: atrial fibrillation, ALDH2*2 variants, hypertension, age, anaemia, smoking, alcohol consumption and sex. Multivariable logistic regression showed that 4 'A' variables (atrial fibrillation, ALDH2*2 variants, age and anaemia) were significantly associated with an increased risk of HFpEF. Atrial fibrillation was associated with a 3.8-fold increased HFpEF risk (95% CI: 2.21-6.61, P < 0.001), and the other three exposures associated with increased HFpEF risk were the ALDH2*2 variant (OR = 2.41, 95% CI: 1.49-3.87, P < 0.001), age (OR = 2.14, 95% CI: 1.27-3.60, P = 0.004), and anaemia (OR = 1.79, 95% CI: 1.05-3.03, P = 0.032). These four variables predicted HFpEF incidence in Chinese CVD patients (C-statistic = 0.745, 95% CI: 0.691-0.800, P < 0.001).

Conclusions: 4 A traits (atrial fibrillation, ALDH2*2 variants, age and anaemia) were associated with an increased risk of HFpEF in Chinese CVD patients. Our results provide potential clues to the aetiology, pathophysiology and therapeutic targets of HFpEF.

Keywords: Aldehyde dehydrogenase 2; Cardiovascular diseases; Diastolic dysfunction; Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction; Risk factor.