The GRACE (Global Registry of Acute Coronary Events) risk score has been shown to offer predictive power with regard to death and AMI (acute myocardial infarction) in patients with ACS (acute coronary syndromes). NT-proBNP (N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide) has also been found to be useful in predicting mortality following ACS. In the present study, we sought to investigate the use of the GRACE score and NT-proBNP levels at predicting risk of early and late deaths following ACS. We studied 1033 patients (740 men, mean age 66.5±12.7 years) with AMI. Blood was drawn once within 24 h following the onset of chest pain. The plasma concentration of NT-proBNP was determined using an in-house non-competitive immunoassay. Patients were GRACE risk scored. The 30-day mortality was 3.7% and the 6-month mortality was 7.8%, and all were related to higher GRACE risk scores (P=0.001 for trend). Higher NT-proBNP levels were also related to increased mortality (P<0.0001). In a Cox proportional hazards model, independent predictors of 30-day and 6-month mortality included NT-proBNP levels and the GRACE risk score. The receiver-operating curve for the GRACE risk score was complemented by NT-proBNP levels for prediction of 30-day mortality [AUC (area under the curve), 0.85] and 6-month mortality (AUC, 0.81). NT-proBNP gives complementary information to the GRACE risk score for predicting early and late mortality. The inclusion of the NT-proBNP blood test is useful in risk-stratifying patients after ACS.

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