Introduction: Cardiac complications such as acute coronary syndrome (ACS) or acute congestive heart failure (ACHF) account for 2-6%of mortality after stroke. Early detection of the patients at the highest risk to suffer from cardiac complications could be of interest to indicate a closer monitoring or therapeutic measures. We aimed to test whether a panel of blood biomarkers could predict the development of cardiac complications during stroke unit admission.
Methods: The StrokeChip was a prospective, observational study, conducted at six Hospitals in Catalonia. Patients with suspected stroke were enrolled at Emergency Departments. Blood samples were obtained within the first six hours after symptom onset to measure a 21-biomarker panel. In-hospital development of cardiac complications (ACS and ACHF) was recorded. The association between the measured biomarkers and the development of complications was assessed by logistic regression analysis.
Results: From August-2012 to December-2013, 941 out of 1308 patients enrolled were ischemic strokes. Cardiac complications were developed by 25 patients, including 19 ACHF and six cases of ACS. Due to the small number of ACS, just ACHF were further analyzed. Patients with ACHF had higher baseline levels of D-dimer, endostatin, VAP-1, NT-proBNP, FasL and vWF, and lower levels of IGFBP-3. After logistic regression analysis, NT-proBNP [OR=3.56(1.17-10.84)], FasL [OR=4.94(1.60-15.26)], VAP-1 [OR=6.56(2.21-19.46)] and IGFBP-3 [OR=0.21(0.07-0.67)] were independently associated with ACHF after adjustment by clinical predictors such as stroke severity, previous disability or history of coronary disease. Addition of the biomarker panel over clinical predictors resulted in improved accuracy (AUC from 0.808 to 0.925, p=0.05).
Conclusions: Baseline measurement of blood biomarkers in acute stroke could be useful to predict the development of cardiac complications during stroke unit admission.