REVIEW – February 2006

Use of natriuretic peptides in management of cardiovascular diseases


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Natriuretic peptides (NPs) are peptide hormones, which are synthesized mainly in myocardial cells in response to increased cardiac wall stress and plasma volume. NPs have diuretic, natriuretic and vasodilative effects. This review article is focused on the problems of reference change values of NPs and on the usage of NP-s 1) in diagnosis of cardiac failure (CF), 2) in prognosis of cardiovascular diseases and 3) in monitoring of CF treatment.
Suspected CF is a definite indication for determination of these peptides: low level of NPs  excludes CF with high probability; on the other hand, high level of NPs renders the CF diagnosis more probable. Usage of NPs as a prognostic marker and their value in monitoring of CF treatment needs further research. NPs have a prognostic value primarily in case of CF and acute coronary syndromes. During CF treatment, determination of the NPs’ level helps assess improvement of the patient.