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BACKGROUND: In patients with heart failure due to dilated cardiomyopathy, cardiac energy metabolism is impaired, as indicated by a reduction of the myocardial phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio, measured noninvasively by 31P-MR spectroscopy. The purpose of this study was to test whether the phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio also offers prognostic information in terms of mortality prediction as well as how this index compares with well-known mortality predictors such as left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) or New York Heart Association (NYHA) class. METHODS AND RESULTS: Thirty-nine patients with dilated cardiomyopathy were followed up for 928+/-85 days (2.5 years). At study entry, LVEF and NYHA class were determined, and the cardiac phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio was measured by localized 31P-MR spectroscopy of the anterior myocardium. During the study period, total mortality was 26%. Patients were divided into two groups, one with a normal phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio (>1.60; mean+/-SE, 1.98+/-0.07; n=19; healthy volunteers: 1.94+/-0.11, n=30) and one with a reduced phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio (<1.60; 1.30+/-0.05; n=20). At re-evaluation (mean, 2.5 years), 8 of 20 patients with reduced phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratios had died, all of cardiovascular causes (total and cardiovascular mortality, 40%). Of the 19 patients with normal phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratios, 2 had died (total mortality, 11%), one of cardiovascular causes (cardiovascular mortality, 5%). Kaplan-Meier analysis showed significantly reduced total (P=.036) and cardiovascular (P=.016) mortality for patients with normal versus patients with low phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratios. A Cox model for multivariate analysis showed that the phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio and NYHA class offered significant independent prognostic information on cardiovascular mortality. CONCLUSIONS: The myocardial phosphocreatine-to-ATP ratio, measured noninvasively with 31P-MR spectroscopy, is a predictor of both total and cardiovascular mortality in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy.


Journal article



Publication Date





2190 - 2196


Adenosine Triphosphate, Adult, Aged, Cardiomyopathy, Dilated, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Life Tables, Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy, Male, Middle Aged, Myocardium, Phosphocreatine, Phosphorus, Predictive Value of Tests, Prognosis, Time Factors