Unstable Angina Pectoris With Myocardial Injury Versus Myocardial Infarction in the Era of High-Sensitivity Cardiac Troponin

It is unknown whether outcomes in patients with unstable angina pectoris (UAP) and myocardial injury are different from outcomes in patients with non-ST-segment myocardial infarction (NSTEMI) with low peak concentrations of high-sensitivity cardiac troponin T (hs-cTnT). This study aimed to compare the prognosis in patients with UAP and evidence of myocardial injury, with prognosis in patients with NSTEMI and different peak hs-cTnT concentrations. All visits to 7 different emergency departments in Sweden from December 9, 2009 to December 31, 2016 were identified (n = 5,225,075). We included all hospitalized patients with hs-cTnT>14 ng/L and a diagnosis of UAP or NSTEMI, with ≥2 hours-cTnT measurements. Hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated for all-cause mortality and cardiovascular events, in patients with NSTEMI categorized according to peak hs-cTnT concentrations, compared with patients with UAP. Altogether, 11,944 patients were included, of whom 1,253 (10%) received a diagnosis of UAP. During a median follow-up of 3.0 years (interquartile [IQR] 1.6 to 4.7), 3,297 patients died. There was no difference comparing patients with NSTEMI with peak hs-cTnT of 15 to 49 ng/L to patients with UAP, with regards to long-term cardiovascular mortality (HR 1.15; 95% CI, 0.85 to 1.56), but the risk of recurrent myocardial infarction was higher in patients with NSTEMI (HR, 1.61; 95% CI, 1.29 to 2.00), and the risk of heart failure hospitalization slightly lower (HR 0.80, 95% CI, 0.64 to 0.99). In conclusion, patients with UAP and myocardial injury have a similar risk of death after discharge, but a lower risk of recurrent myocardial infarction and a marginally higher risk of heart failure, compared with patients with NSTEMI with moderately elevated hs-cTnT levels.

as reported in: Am J Cardiol. 2022 Apr 15; 169 32-41