Troponins are proteins in heart muscle that are released into the blood when the heart is damaged. Because cardiac troponin isn’t present in skeletal muscles and is usually too low to measure in the blood of healthy people, a blood test for troponin has been widely considered one of the best indicators of a heart attack.
However, our research has indicated that troponin is less reliable in determining cardiovascular disease in women than in men. So you may also be scheduled for other tests, including those for C-reactive protein (CRP) and B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP).
Understanding Troponin Tests
Troponin is detectable in the blood immediately after heart damage and may be measurable for days afterward. A blood test for troponin will usually be performed at the first sign of severe chest pain and may also be used to monitor heart failure and other chronic heart conditions.
Learning Your Test Results
When a troponin test is performed in the emergency room, the results will be available within minutes. If you have a troponin test, your doctor will explain the results in the context of the results of other tests.
Date Last Modified: January 21, 2011
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