Association between high-sensitivity cardiac troponin I and fall-related hospitalization in women aged over 70 years

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title



BMJ Publishing Group


School of Medical and Health Sciences / Nutrition and Health Innovation Research Institute




Gebre, A. K., Sim, M., Dalla Via, J., Smith, C., Rodriguez, A. J., Hodgson, J. M., . . . Lewis, J. R. (2023). Association between high-sensitivity cardiac troponin I and fall-related hospitalisation in women aged over 70 years. Heart, 110(2), 104-118.


Objective: To examine the association between high-sensitivity cardiac troponin I (hs-cTnI), a biomarker of myocardial injury, muscle function decline and 14.5-year fall-related hospitalisation risk in women aged over 70 years. Methods: 1179 ambulatory community-dwelling women aged over 70 years with subclinical levels of hs-cTnI (ie, < 15.6 ng/L), who were followed up for 14.5 years, were included. Samples for hs-cTnI were obtained in 1998. Fall-related hospitalisations were retrieved from linked health records. Muscle function measures, including handgrip strength and the Timed-Up-and-Go (TUG) test, were assessed in 1998 and 2003. Results: Mean±SD age was 75.2±2.7 years. Over 14.5 years of follow-up, 40.4% (476 of 1179) experienced fall-related hospitalisation. Participants were categorised into four approximate hs-cTnI quartiles: quartile 1 ( < 3.6 ng/L), quartile 2 (3.6–4.4 ng/L), quartile 3 (4.5–5.8 ng/L) and quartile 4 ( ≥ 5.9 ng/L). Compared with those in Q1, women in Q4 were likely to experience fall-related hospitalisation (36.0% vs 42.8%). In a multivariable-adjusted model that accounted for CVD and fall risk factors, compared with women in Q1, those in Q4 had a 46% higher risk of fall-related hospitalisation (HR 1.46, 95% CI 1.08 to 1.98). Additionally, women in Q4 had slower TUG performance compared with those in Q1 (10.3 s vs 9.5 s, p=0.032). Conclusion: Elevated level of hs-cTnI was associated with slower TUG performance and increased fall-related hospitalisation risk. This indicates subclinical level of hs-cTnI can identify clinically relevant falls, emphasising the need to consider cardiac health during fall assessment in women aged over 70 years.

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