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Blood test can predict risk of heart attack and death

A high-sensitivity blood test, known as a troponin test, could predict the risk of heart attack and death and patients’ response to statins, say researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Blood_sample-iStock.jpg

A high-sensitivity blood test, known as a troponin test, could predict the risk of heart attack and death and patients response to statins, say researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow.

A troponin test is currently used to help diagnose a heart attack, but the researchers said measuring troponin levels in the blood could be a more effective way of assessing future heart disease risk than blood pressure or cholesterol.

70,000

deaths in the UK each year from coronary heart disease making it the UKs biggest killer

Targeted treatments

In the study of 3,000 men with high cholesterol but no history of heart disease, the researchers found that changes in blood levels of troponin accurately

...

A high-sensitivity blood test, known as a troponin test, could predict the risk of heart attack and death and patients’ response to statins, say researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow.


Measuring troponin levels in the blood could be the most effective way of assessing future
heart disease risk. Picture: iStock 

A troponin test is currently used to help diagnose a heart attack, but the researchers said measuring troponin levels in the blood could be a more effective way of assessing future heart disease risk than blood pressure or cholesterol.

70,000

deaths in the UK each year from coronary heart disease – making it the UK’s biggest killer  

Targeted treatments 

In the study of 3,000 men with high cholesterol but no history of heart disease, the researchers found that changes in blood levels of troponin accurately predicted the risk of a person having a heart attack or dying from coronary heart disease up to 15 years later.

They also found that taking a statin reduced troponin levels. Those with the biggest troponin-level decrease had a five-fold lower risk of heart attack or death from coronary heart disease, compared with those whose troponin levels were unchanged or increased.

‘These results could revolutionise the way we manage patients at risk of coronary heart disease,’ said lead study author Nicholas Mills. ‘Troponin testing will help doctors to identify apparently healthy individuals who have silent heart disease, so we can target preventative treatments to those who are likely to benefit most.’


Ford I et al (2016) High-Sensitivity Cardiac Troponin, Statin Therapy, and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease. Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2016.10.020

 

 

 

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