Heart doi:10.1136/heartjnl-2012-303429
  • Basic research
  • Original article

High-sensitivity cardiac troponin T levels are increased in stable COPD

Open Access
  1. Torbjørn Omland1,2
  1. 1Department of Cardiology, Division of Medicine, Akershus University Hospital, Lørenskog, Norway
  2. 2Center for Heart Failure Research and KG Jebsen Cardiac Research Centre, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
  3. 3Department of Pulmonology, Division of Medicine, Akershus University Hospital, Lørenskog, Norway
  4. 4Unit of Medical Biochemistry, Division of Diagnostics and Technology, Akershus University Hospital, Lørenskog, Norway
  1. Correspondence to Professor Torbjørn Omland, Division of Medicine, Akershus University Hospital, Sykehusveien 27, Lørenskog 1478, Norway; torbjorn.omland{at}
  • Received 26 November 2012
  • Revised 26 November 2012
  • Accepted 27 November 2012
  • Published Online First 12 January 2013


Objective To assess the distribution of high-sensitivity cardiac troponin T (hs-cTnT) concentrations in stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and whether hs-cTnT is associated with pulmonary function.

Design Prospectively designed, cross-sectional study.

Setting Outpatient clinic of Norwegian teaching hospital and community-based setting.

Participants Sample of 101 stable COPD patients from the hospital's outpatient clinic and 120 individuals derived from a random general population sample.

Main outcomes Ratio of hs-cTnT in stable COPD patients compared with references from the general population. Change in ratio of hs-cTnT per unit increase of relevant covariables.

Results The crude geometric means of circulating hs-cTnT in the cases and the references were 7.75 and 3.01 ng/l, respectively (p <0.001); that is, a relative ratio of 2.57 (95% CI 2.05 to 3.23). After adjustment for relevant confounders, this ratio was moderately attenuated to 1.65 (1.31–2.08). In the total study cohort, as well as among stable COPD patients, we found a significant positive association between hs-cTnT and interleukin-6 concentrations (p <0.001) and the presence of pathologic Q waves (p=0.023). Among stable COPD patients, one quartile increase in forced expiratory volume 1 was associated with a 39% decrease in hs-cTnT and patient category (Global Initiative of Obstructive Lung Disease  classification 2011) was positively associated with hs-cTnT (p trend <0.001) after multivariate adjustment.

Conclusions Stable COPD is independently associated with higher hs-cTnT compared with randomly drawn subjects from the general population. In patients with stable COPD, higher hs-cTnT seems to be associated with immune activation and the severity of the disease.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial License, which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non commercial and is otherwise in compliance with the license. See: and

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