Liver dysfunction has a prognostic impact on the outcomes of patients with advanced heart failure (HF). The model for end-stage liver disease (MELD) score is a robust system for rating liver dysfunction, and a high score has been shown to be associated with a poor prognosis in ambulatory patients with HF. In addition, cardiac metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) imaging provides prognostic information in patients with chronic HF (CHF). However, the long-term predictive value of combining the MELD score and cardiac MIBG imaging in patients with CHF has not been elucidated. To prospectively investigate whether cardiac MIBG imaging provides additional prognostic value to the MELD score in patients with mild-to-moderate CHF, we studied 109 CHF outpatients (New York Heart Association: 2.0 ± 0.6) with left ventricular ejection fraction <40%. At enrollment, an MELD score was obtained, and the heart-to-mediastinal ratio on delayed imaging and MIBG washout rate (WR) were measured using cardiac MIBG scintigraphy. During a follow-up period of 7.5 ± 4.2 years, 36 of 109 patients experienced cardiac death (CD). On multivariate Cox analysis, MELD score and WR were significantly independently associated with CD, although heart-to-mediastinal ratio showed an association with CD only on univariate Cox analysis. Patients with abnormal WR (>27%) had a significantly greater risk of CD than those with normal WR in both those with high MELD scores (≥10; hazard ratio 4.0 [1.2 to 13.6]) and with low MELD scores (<10; hazard ratio 6.4 [1.7 to 23.2]). In conclusion, cardiac MIBG imaging would provide additional prognostic information to the MELD score in patients with mild-to-moderate CHF.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine