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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Severe Fetal Distress and Placental Damage might be Associated with High Troponin I (cTnI) Levels in Mothers

Unknown ethiology, Challenging differential diagnosis

Irene Turrini, Flavia Sorbi, Viola Ghizzoni, Luca Mannini, Massimiliano Fambrini, Alessandro Terreni, Elisabetta Projetto, Francesca Castiglione, Ivo Noci

Italy Department of Experimental and Clinical Biomedical Sciences, University of Florence, Florence, Italy

Am J Case Rep 2018; 19:194-198

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.906617

Available online:

Published: 2018-02-21


BACKGROUND: Troponin I is the gold standard for the diagnosis of adult acute coronary syndrome. Although it is known that a hypoxic fetus may produce cTnI, fetal cTnI passage in maternal blood has never been documented.
CASE REPORT: We report a case where the rise of cTnI in the blood of a pregnant woman was not related to maternal heart disease. Instead, it might be suggestive of a fetal cardiac origin, as there was a severe placental insufficiency with a fetal intrauterine growth restriction.
CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that the rise of cTnI in maternal blood in a cardiovascular healthy pregnant woman might have a fetal origin. After having excluded any maternal causes, cTnI elevation could be explained with the transfer of fetal cTnI through an injured placenta.

Keywords: Fetal Growth Retardation, Fetal Hypoxia, Placenta Diseases, troponin I