A blood test that measures levels of NT-proBNP, a protein produced when the heart is under stress, helps diagnose heart failure.
New finding: In people seeking emergency care for shortness of breath, a common symptom of heart failure and heart attack, those with high levels of NT-proBNP were three times more likely to die within one year than those without.
If you suffer from shortness of breath: Ask about getting this test to help determine your long-term prognosis. A clinical trial is underway to evaluate more aggressive drug therapy for patients with high levels of NT-proBNP.
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