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Aims: Anaemia in heart failure (HF) is associated with a poor prognosis. Although inflammation is assumed to be an important cause of anaemia, the association between anaemia and inflammatory markers in patients with HF has not been well established. Methods: Data from a multicentre randomised clinical trial, in which patients were eligible if they were > 18 years of age and admitted for HF (New York Heart Association II–IV), were used. In a subset of 326 patients, haemoglobin (Hb), haematocrit, high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP), interleukin-(IL) 6, soluble tumour necrosis factor receptor (sTNFR)-1 and erythropoietin (Epo) were measured at discharge and the primary endpoint was all-cause mortality. Follow-up was 18 months. Results: Anaemia (Hb < 13 g/dl (men) and < 12 g/dl (women)) was present in 40% (130/326) of the study population. Median levels of IL-6, hsCRP and sTNFR-1 were significantly higher in anaemic patients than in non-anaemic patients. Logistic regression demonstrated that each increase in hsCRP values (OR 1.58 per SD log hsCRP; 95% CI 1.09 to 2.29; p=0.016) and each increase in sTNFR-1 values (OR 1.62 per SD log sTNFR-1; 95% CI 1.24 to 2.11; p < 0.001) were independently associated with anaemia. Epo (HR 1.31 per log Epo; 95% CI 1.01 to 1.69; p=0.041) and sTNFR-1 (HR 1.47 per log sTNFR-1; 95% CI 1.16 to 1.86; p=0.001) levels were independently associated with outcome. Conclusion: Anaemia is present in 40% of patients hospitalised for HF and is independently associated with inflammation.


Mary MacKillop Institute for Health Research

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Journal Article

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