Prognostic Value of Preoperative Pro-B-Type Natriuretic Peptide: Early Predictor of Cardiovascular Complications and Mortality After Major Abdominal Surgery

Cureus. 2020 Nov 5;12(11):e11338. doi: 10.7759/cureus.11338.


Background and objectives In surgical patients, coronary disease is the main cause of perioperative mortality. The incidence of serious cardiovascular complications is reported as 5% with a probability of 1-2% of death from the cardiac cause in major non-cardiac surgery. B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) is a sensitive and specific predictor of left ventricular systolic dysfunction and predicts first cardiovascular event and death in the general population. The recent guidelines recommended the use of pro-BNP for independent perioperative prognosis in cardiac patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery. The aim of this study is to assess the predictive value of raised pro-BNP levels in patients who underwent major abdominal surgery and evaluate its relationship with cardiovascular complications and mortality occurring up to 30 days after surgery. Materials and methods We reviewed the medical records of patients undergone surgical procedures in the abdominal region lasting more than two hours, requiring postoperative high dependence or intensive care and an expected hospital stay of at least three days. All types of open or laparoscopic-assisted abdominal or pelvic surgeries that were evaluated for preoperative pro-BNP levels were included in the study. During the postoperative period, all patients were followed for cardiac complications and mortality for 30 days after surgery. Postoperative adverse cardiac events were predefined as angina pectoris, myocardial infarction, cardiogenic dyspnea, acute arrhythmias (atrial fibrillation/flutter, ventricular fibrillation/tachycardia), acute hypertensive event (hypertensive emergency or urgency), congestive heart failure, acute pulmonary edema, or primary cardiac death. While non-cardiac complications were also documented as either pulmonary, septic, postsurgical site infection, and other systemic complications. Subsequently, a survival analysis was done for the discretion of cardiovascular complications and mortality. Results The mean age of the study population was found to be 50.22 ± 14.28 years, mean pro-BNP levels were 909.29 ± 3950.04, and mean days of hospital stay were 7.43 ± 4.49 days. The 30-day postoperative all-cause mortality was found to be 9.8%. Hypertension and diabetes were frequent comorbidities amongst the study population. The mean preoperative pro-BNP levels were found higher in the male gender (p=0.071), also found higher in those with cardiovascular complications (p=0.006) and mortality (p=0.057). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis showed cardiovascular outcomes with a cut-off value of pro-BNP at 143 pg/ml, AUC of 0.891, at a sensitivity of 91%, positive predictive value (PPV) of 96%, a specificity of 75%, and negative predictive value (NPV) of 58%, while the same for mortality at a cut-off value of 164 pg/ml was found with AUC of 0.815, at a sensitivity of 84%, a specificity of 66%, PPV of 97%, and NPV of 21%. The unadjusted odds ratio for cardiovascular complications was found to be 17.857 (95% CI: 6.56-48.60) while that for mortality was 10.863 (95% Cl: 2.29-51.37). The Kaplan-Meier survival curves showing elevated pro-BNP levels were significantly associated with cardiovascular events, with 30 days mortality at a cut-off value of 164 pg/ml. Conclusion Pro-BNP is a useful marker in postoperative patients for not only predicting cardiovascular outcomes as cited by many previous studies but also mortality.

Keywords: cardiac bnp; cardiac failure; cardiovascular; myocardial infarction; n terminal pro bnp; outcome; post operative complication; predictability; surgery; survival analysis.