Background: Patients undergoing non-cardiac, non-vascular surgery are at risk of major cardiovascular complications. In non-cardiac surgery, troponin elevation has previously been shown to be an independent predictor of major adverse cardiac events and postoperative mortality; however, a majority of studies have focused on vascular surgery patients. The aim of this meta-analysis was to determine whether troponin elevation is a predictor of major adverse cardiac events and mortality within 30 days and 1 yr after non-cardiac, non-vascular surgery.
Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted in January 2016 according to the Meta-analysis Of Observational Studies in Epidemiology guidelines. Both interventional and observational studies measuring troponin within the first 4 days after surgery were eligible. A systematic search was performed in PubMed, EMBASE, Scopus, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials.
Results: Eleven eligible clinical studies (n=2193) were identified. A postoperative troponin elevation was a predictor of 30 day mortality, odds ratio (OR) 3.52 [95% confidence interval (CI) 2.21–5.62; I2=0%], and an independent predictor of 1 yr mortality, adjusted OR 2.53 (95% CI 1.20–5.36; I2=26%). A postoperative troponin elevation was associated with major adverse cardiac events at 30 days, OR 5.92 (95% CI 1.67–20.96; I2=86%), and 1 yr after surgery, adjusted OR 3.00 (95% CI 1.43–6.29; I2=21%).
Conclusions: Postoperative myocardial injury is an independent predictor of major adverse cardiac events and mortality within 30 days and 1 yr after non-cardiac, non-vascular surgery. The meta-analysis provides evidence that supports troponin monitoring as a cardiovascular risk stratification tool.