Abstract / Description of output
The application of high-sensitivity cardiac troponins in clinical practice has led to an increase in the recognition of elevated concentrations in patients without myocardial ischaemia. The Fourth Universal Definition of Myocardial Infarction encourages clinicians to classify such patients as having an acute or chronic myocardial injury based on the presence or absence of a rise or a fall in cardiac troponin concentrations. Both conditions may be caused by a variety of cardiac and non-cardiac conditions, and evidence suggests that clinical outcomes are worse than patients with myocardial infarction due to atherosclerotic plaque rupture, with as few as one-third of patients alive at 5 years. Major adverse cardiovascular events are comparable between populations, and up to three-fold higher than healthy individuals. Despite this, no evidence-based strategies exist to guide clinicians in the investigation of non-ischaemic myocardial injury. This review explores the aetiology of myocardial injury and proposes a simple framework to guide clinicians in early assessment to identify those who may benefit from further investigation and treatment for those with cardiovascular disease.