Pressure-Flow During Exercise Catheterization Predicts Survival in Pulmonary Hypertension

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Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Pulmonary hypertension manifests with impaired exercise capacity. Our aim was to investigate whether the mean pulmonary arterial pressure to cardiac output relationship (mPAP/CO) predicts transplant-free survival in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and inoperable chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH).

METHODS:

Hemodynamic data according to right heart catheterization in patients with PAH and CTEPH at rest and during supine incremental cycle exercise were analyzed. Transplant-free survival and predictive value of hemodynamics were assessed by using Kaplan-Meier and Cox regression analyses.

RESULTS:

Seventy patients (43 female; 54 with PAH, 16 with CTEPH; median (quartiles) age, 65 [50; 73] years; mPAP, 34 [29; 44] mm Hg; cardiac index, 2.8 [2.3; 3.5] [L/min]/m2) were followed up for 610 (251; 1256) days. Survival at 1, 3, 5, and 7 years was 89%, 81%, 71%, and 59%. Age, World Health Organization-functional class, 6-min walk test, and mixed-venous oxygen saturation (but not resting hemodynamics) predicted transplant-free survival. Maximal workload (hazard ratio [HR], 0.94 [95% CI, 0.89-0.99]; P = .027), peak cardiac index (HR, 0.51 [95% CI, 0.27-0.95]; P = .034), change in cardiac index, 0.25 [95% CI, 0.06-0.94]; P = .040), and mPAP/CO (HR, 1.02 [95% CI, 1.01-1.03]; P = .003) during exercise predicted survival. Values for mPAP/CO predicted 3-year transplant-free survival with an area under the curve of 0.802 (95% CI, 0.66-0.95; P = .004).

CONCLUSIONS:

In this collective of patients with PAH or CTEPH, the pressure-flow relationship during exercise predicted transplant-free survival and correlated with established markers of disease severity and outcome. Right heart catheterization during exercise may provide important complementary prognostic information in the management of pulmonary hypertension.

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