Background: B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) increases the risk of death and cardiovascular events in patients without heart failure, even at BNP values within the "normal" range. The reasons for this are unclear. Methods: We performed two separate studies (n = 33 and n = 129) on subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus in whom frank left ventricular systolic dysfunction had been excluded to ascertain whether a high-normal BNP could be identifying either greater augmentation of the ascending aortic pressure wave, increased left ventricular mass, or a subtly lower left ventricular ejection fraction (but within the normal range). Results: Our results demonstrate that an increased augmentation index is an independent predictor of BNP levels even when BNP levels are within the normal range (P = .006 in study one and P = .007 in study two). A high-normal BNP also correlated with increased left ventricular mass and (P = .021) with a subtly lower left ventricular ejection fraction (P < .001). Conclusions: We found that high-normal BNP levels identified increased augmentation of the ascending aortic pressure wave as well as subtle left ventricular abnormalities.
- B-type natriuretic peptide
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus