Main Article Content
Heart Failure, BNP, NT-proBNP, Nesiritide
Heart failure (HF) is a debilitating, life-threatening condition with an annual cost to the Canadian health care system of $1.4 - 2.3 billion. Intensive research efforts have focused on the roles that B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP; also referred to as “brain natriuretic peptide”) and amino-terminal pro-BNP (NT-proBNP) may play in the care of the HF patient. This review article will summarize the clinical applications of BNP/NT-proBNP as they pertain to HF diagnosis, treatment and prognostification, as well as guidance of long-term HF therapy. This article will also include discussion of the basic biochemical and physiological characteristics of BNP, as well as a review of the pathophysiologies of forms of HF pertinent to the discussion of BNP/NT-proBNP.