Context. - D-dimer concentration can be used to exclude a diagnosis of acute pulmonary embolism. However, clinicians frequently order unnecessary supplemental testing in patients with low concentrations of D-dimer. Elevations in natriuretic peptides have also been described in the setting of pulmonary embolism. Objective. - We investigated the integrative role of D-dimer with amino-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide for the evaluation of patients with and without acute pulmonary embolism. Design. - Patients were selected for analysis from a previous study in which levels of D-dimer and amino-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide were measured. The presence of pulmonary embolism was determined by computed tomographic angiography. Results.- The median levels of D-dimer were significantly higher in patients with acute pulmonary embolism. Similarly, the median levels of amino-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide were higher in patients with pulmonary embolism. Conclusions. - The Roche Tina-quant D-Dimer immunoturbidimetric assay provides a high negative predictive value and can be used to exclude acute pulmonary embolism in patients with dyspnea. Measurement of amino-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide in addition to D-dimer improves specificity for acute pulmonary embolism without sacrificing negative predictive value. A combination of both markers may offer reassurance for excluding acute pulmonary embolism, and thus avoid redundant, expensive confirmatory tests.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine|
|State||Published - Sep 2006|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Medical Laboratory Technology