n Cardiovascular Journal of Africa - Comparison of a qualitative measurement of heart-type fatty acid-binding protein with other cardiac markers as an early diagnostic marker in the diagnosis of non-ST - segment elevation myocardial infarction : cardiovascular topics



Heart-type fatty acid-binding protein (H-FABP) is a novel cardiac marker used in the early diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), which shows myocyte injury. Our study aimed to compare bedside H-FABP measurements with routine creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB) and troponin I (TnI) tests for the early diagnosis of non-ST-elevation MI (NSTEMI), as well as for determining its exclusion capacity.

A total of 48 patients admitted to the emergency room within the first 12 hours of onset of ischaemic-type chest pain lasting more than 30 minutes and who did not have ST-segment elevation on electrocardiography (ECG) were included in the study. Definite diagnoses of NSTEMI were made in 24 patients as a result of 24-hour follow up, and the remaining 24 patients did not develop MI.
When various subgroups were analysed according to admission times, H-FABP was found to be a better diagnostic marker compared to CK-MB and TnI (accuracy index 85%), with a high sensitivity (79%) and specificity (93%) for early diagnosis (≤ six hours). The respective sensitivities of bedside H-FABP and TnI tests were 89 vs 33% ( < 0.05) for patients presenting within three hours of onset of symptoms.
Bedside H-FABP measurements may contribute to correct early diagnoses, as its levels are elevated soon following MI, and measurement is easy, with a rapid result.


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