Lack of Evidence Regarding Markers Identifying Acute Heart Failure in Patients with COPD: An AI-Supported Systematic Review

Sanne H.B. van Dijk, Marjolein G.J. Brusse-Keizer, Charlotte Cecile Bucsán, Eline H. Ploumen, Wendy van Beurden, Job van der Palen, Carine Doggen, Anke Lenferink*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

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Background: Due to shared symptoms, acute heart failure (AHF) is difficult to differentiate from an acute exacerbation of COPD (AECOPD). This systematic review aimed to identify markers that can diagnose AHF underlying acute dyspnea in patients with COPD presenting at the hospital.
Methods: All types of observational studies and clinical trials that investigated any marker’s ability to diagnose AHF in acutely dyspneic COPD patients were considered eligible for inclusion. An AI tool (ASReview) supported the title and abstract screening of the articles obtained from PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, the Cochrane Library, Embase, and CINAHL until April 2023. Full text screening was independently performed by two reviewers. Twenty percent of the data extraction was checked by a second reviewer and the risk of bias was assessed in duplicate using the QUADAS-2 tool. Markers’ discriminative abilities were evaluated in terms of sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and the area under the curve when available.
Results: The search identified 10,366 articles. After deduplication, title and abstract screening was performed on 5,386 articles, leaving 153 relevant, of which 82 could be screened full text. Ten distinct studies (reported in 16 articles) were included, of which 9 had a high risk of bias. Overall, these studies evaluated 12 distinct laboratory and 7 non-laboratory markers. BNP, NT-proBNP, MR-proANP, and inspiratory inferior vena cava diameter showed the highest diagnostic discrimination.
Conclusion: There is not much evidence for the use of markers to diagnose AHF in acutely dyspneic COPD patients in the hospital setting. BNPs seem most promising, but should be interpreted alongside imaging and clinical signs, as this may lead to improved diagnostic accuracy. Future validation studies are urgently needed before any AHF marker can be incorporated into treatment decision-making algorithms for patients with COPD.
Protocol Registration: CRD42022283952.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)531-541
Number of pages11
JournalInternational journal of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2024


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