New blood test found to diagnose heart attack faster

8 August 2018 (Last Updated August 8th, 2018 12:29)

A new blood test has diagnosed heart attacks faster in a clinical study performed at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

New blood test found to diagnose heart attack faster
Heart disease is reported to be the primary cause of deaths in the US. Credit: American Heart Association.

A new blood test has diagnosed heart attacks faster in a clinical study performed at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

The blood test features high sensitivity for cardiac troponin, and is intended to determine if a person is having a heart attack upon arriving in the emergency room.

During the study, the test was observed to be safe and effective. Its efficacy was compared to a standard method that requires three hours to complete.

“The blood test features high sensitivity for cardiac troponin, and is intended to determine if a person is having a heart attack upon arriving in the emergency room.”

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center cardiologist Rebecca Vigen said: “We did not miss any heart attacks using this test in this population.

“The test also allowed us to determine faster that many patients who had symptoms of a heart attack were not having a heart attack than if we had relied on the traditional test.”

The research study involved a total of 536 patients who were admitted to an emergency room with heart attack symptoms such as chest pains and shortness of breath.

A procedure developed by the university’s team was used to evaluate results obtained using the new test. Data showed that the test could successfully rule out heart attack in 30% of patients instantly and another 25% at one hour.

At three hours, the new approach was able to rule out 83.8% of patients compared to 80.4% in the case of the traditional test.

Vigen added: “We anticipate that this procedure will allow many patients with chest pain to be given a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ diagnosis of whether they are having a heart attack faster.”

Results from the research were published in the American Heart Association’s Circulation journal.