The utility of measuring cardiac troponins (cTn) in asymptomatic patients during the perioperative period has been controversial. In the present substudy of the Cardiac Remote Ischemic Preconditioning Prior to Elective Vascular Surgery Trial (NCT01558596), we hypothesized that surveillance of myocardial injury with cTnI in the perioperative period would lead to initiation or intensification of medical therapies for coronary artery disease. Increases in cTnI ≥0.01 μg/l in the perioperative period were considered clinically significant. Intensification of medical therapy was defined as initiation of aspirin or initiation or increases in the dose of angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin-receptor blockers, statins, or β blockers and was left to the discretion of treating physicians. From June 2011 to April 2015, a total of 185 patients (mean age 68 ± 7 years, 100% men) were enrolled in the trial. A total of 28 patients (15%) had significant increases in cTnI after vascular surgery, and 38 (20.5%) had their medical therapies intensified in the perioperative period. Among patients with increases in cTnI, 11 (39%) had intensification of medical therapy versus 27 patients (17%) with no or smaller increases in cTnI (p = 0.02). Among those patients with ΔcTnI ≥0.01 μg/l, hospital readmissions at 3 to 6 months were 7.6% for the intensification group versus 25% for the no intensification group (p = 0.18). Mortality rate at 6 months was low in both groups (2.6% vs 0%, respectively, p = 0.13). In conclusion, among patients undergoing vascular surgery, perioperative increases in cTn were associated with initiation or intensification of medical therapies for coronary artery disease at the time of discharge.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Dr. Sandoval has no financial relationships and is a non salaried advisor to Roche Clinical Diagnostics. Dr. Brilakis has received speaker honoraria from St Jude Medical, Terumo, and Bridgepoint Medical; spouse is an employee of Medtronic. Dr. Garcia is a recipient of a career development award (1IK2CX000699-01) from the VA Office of Research and Development. Dr. Garcia is a consultant for Surmodics. All other authors have nothing to disclose.
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