Liver enzyme elevations occur with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI); however, their significance in the modern era is not well-defined. The incidence of liver enzyme elevations in STEMI, temporal trends, correlations with creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB), and associations with clinical outcomes were evaluated.
The Complement Inhibition in Myocardial Infarction Treated with Angioplasty and Complement Inhibition in Myocardial Infarction Treated with Thrombolytics trials evaluated 1903 patients with STEMI. A core lab analyzed liver enzymes at baseline, days 1, 6, and 14, and CK-MB measured sequentially over 72 h. The GUSTO model for 30-day mortality was used to predict clinical endpoints.
A total of 1783 patients were included in the analysis. Aspartate transaminase (AST) was elevated above the upper limit of normal in 85.6% and alanine transaminase (ALT) was elevated in 48.2% of patients at baseline or day 1. CK-MB area under the curve correlated with maximum AST (r=0.727) and maximum ALT (r=0.456). Both AST and ALT elevations were independent predictors of worse outcomes in multivariable adjusted analysis, even after adjustment for CK-MB. Hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals of AST elevation were 1.12 (1.05–1.19) for all-cause mortality, and 1.08 (1.02–1.13) for the composite endpoint of death, congestive heart failure, shock, or stroke. Hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals of ALT elevation were 1.15 (1.04–1.27) for mortality and 1.47 (1.10–1.98) for the composite endpoint.
AST and ALT elevations are common in STEMI. Both markers are correlated with CK-MB area under the curve, but independently associated with worse mortality and clinical outcomes.