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The laboratory in intensive and acute cardiac care 

The laboratory in intensive and acute cardiac care
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date: 19 October 2019

Understanding the proper use of biomarkers requires clinicians to appreciate some critical pre-analytic and analytic issues, as well as how to use the markers properly. The bene?ts of such an approach will not only facilitate the care of patients today, but will also prepare clinicians to understand and embrace the new generation of markers that is coming and that will continue to make this area transformational for cardiology. Two fundamental concepts underlie the clinical use of biomarkers: First, biomarkers should always be used in conjunction with all other clinical information. Second, in order to maximize their diagnostic and prognostic use, biomarkers should be interpreted as quantitative variables. For example, a cardiac troponin level which is 50 times the upper limit of normal has a much higher positive predictive value for the presence of an acute myocardial infarction, compared to a level just above the upper limit of normal.

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