Butyrylcholinesterase as a perioperative complication marker in patients after transcatheter aortic valve implantation: a prospective observational study

BMJ Open. 2021 Jul 6;11(7):e042857. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2020-042857.


Objectives: Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is performed in elderly patients with severe aortic valve stenosis and increased operative risks. We tested the hypothesis that acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) have a predictive value for prevalent complications after TAVI and could serve as indicators of systemic inflammation in the early postoperative period.

Design: Prospective observational study.

Setting: This study is a secondary analysis of multicentre CESARO- study.

Participants: 48 patients with TAVI were included and 43 obtained the complete assessment.

Primary and secondary outcome measures: Patients' clinical parameters, demographic data, peripheral AChE and BChE activities and routine blood markers were assessed throughout the perioperative period using bedside point-of-care measurements for AChE and BChE. Postoperative complication screening was conducted up to the third postoperative day and included infections, delirium and heart-rhythm disturbances. After assessment, the patients were divided into complication and noncomplication group.

Results: Of 43 patients, 24 developed postsurgical complications (55.8%). Preoperative assessment showed no significant differences regarding demographic data and laboratory markers, but preoperative BChE levels were significantly lower in patients who developed postoperative complications (complication group 2589.2±556.4 vs noncomplication group 3295.7±628.0, Cohen's r=0.514, p<0.001). In complication group, we observed an early, sustained reduction in BChE activity from preoperative to postoperative period. In complication group, BChE levels were significantly lower at each time point compared with noncomplication group. AChE activity showed no significant difference between both groups. Complication group also had longer stay in hospital overall.

Conclusion: BChE could be a useful perioperative biomarker to identify patients with a higher risk for postoperative complications after TAVI. By using point-of-care measurements, the levels of BChE are fast available and can lead to an early targeted therapy. Predicting the length of the hospital stay might play an important role in staff and resource management for these patients.

Trial registration number: NCT01964274; Post-results.

Keywords: adult cardiology; adult intensive & critical care; anaesthesia in cardiology; valvular heart disease.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aortic Valve Stenosis* / surgery
  • Biomarkers
  • Butyrylcholinesterase
  • Humans
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement* / adverse effects
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Biomarkers
  • Butyrylcholinesterase

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01964274