BNP Test Report Template

Get a free BNP Test Report Template. Use this PDF to record BNP Test values and streamline your clinical documentation.

By Ericka Pingol on Apr 08, 2024.

Fact Checked by RJ Gumban.

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What is a B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) test?

A BNP test is a simple and effective tool healthcare professionals use to diagnose and monitor heart failure. It measures the levels of a specific hormone, called B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP), in the blood.

The heart muscle produces BNP in response to increased pressure or stress on the heart. When there is heart failure, the heart muscle cannot pump blood efficiently, causing an increase in pressure and stress. This leads to a rise in BNP levels in the blood.

The BNP test helps healthcare professionals determine if a patient's symptoms are due to heart failure or another medical condition. It can also indicate the severity of heart failure and help guide treatment decisions.

Before the test, patients are advised not to eat or drink anything except for water for at least 12 hours. They should also avoid strenuous exercise or smoking before the test, as these activities can affect the results. A small blood sample is drawn from a vein in the arm during the test. The blood is then sent to a laboratory for analysis. Results are usually available within 24 hours.

A normal BNP level ranges from 0-100 picograms per milliliter (pg/mL). Higher levels may indicate heart failure or other cardiac issues, while lower levels may suggest a different underlying condition.

It is important to note that the BNP test alone cannot diagnose heart failure. Healthcare professionals use it with other diagnostic tests, such as an echocardiogram and physical examination, to make a conclusive diagnosis.

Printable BNP Test Report Template

Download this BNP Test Report Template to properly diagnose and monitor heart failure and identify potential complications.

What is the purpose of the BNP blood test?

The BNP Test is used in various situations, including diagnosing and monitoring heart failure, determining the effectiveness of treatment plans, and identifying potential complications.

It is also helpful in differentiating heart failure from other conditions with similar symptoms. For example, a patient may experience difficulty breathing due to heart failure or lung disease. The BNP test can help healthcare professionals determine the cause of the symptom and provide appropriate treatment.

Furthermore, BNP levels can also indicate the severity of heart failure. As the condition progresses, the heart has to work harder to pump blood throughout the body, increasing BNP levels. By monitoring these levels over time, healthcare professionals can track the progression of heart failure and adjust treatment plans accordingly.

BNP Test example (sample)

Our team has created a sample BNP Test Report to provide you with a visual representation of the information that can be obtained from this test. Please note that the values depicted are for illustrative purposes only and do not reflect actual patient data. You can download the sample or view the PDF copy here.

Download this BNP Test Report Template example: 

BNP Test example (sample)

The impact of BNP in heart failure

BNP is a hormone produced by the heart and blood vessels, specifically in response to increased pressure or stress on these organs. When the heart muscles are overworked due to acute heart failure or high blood pressure, they release BNP into the bloodstream.

This hormone plays a crucial role in maintaining cardiovascular health by causing blood vessels to dilate and increasing the amount of oxygen-rich blood pumped by the heart. However, in cases of chronic heart failure, prolonged exposure to BNP can have damaging effects on the vessels, leading to further complications.

BNP testing has become an integral part of diagnosing and managing heart failure. Unlike other diagnostic tools, such as X-rays or echocardiograms, a BNP blood test is non-invasive and can provide quick results. This makes it a valuable tool in emergency departments, where prompt diagnosis and treatment are crucial.

Normal BNP range by age and sex

The levels of BNP in the bloodstream can vary depending on age and sex. As a person ages, their BNP levels tend to increase gradually.

The American Heart Association states that healthy individuals under 50 typically have BNP levels below 100 pg/mL. In comparison, those over 70 may have up to 900 pg/mL levels.

Women tend to have slightly lower BNP levels than men, with the exception of pregnant women, who may have higher levels due to increased stress on the heart during pregnancy. These variations in BNP levels highlight the importance of considering age and sex when interpreting test results.

Moreover, BNP levels can also vary depending on the individual's overall health and underlying medical conditions. For example, those with heart failure may have significantly higher BNP levels compared to healthy individuals of the same age and sex.

It's important to look at BNP levels with other diagnostic tests and clinical factors to assess a person's cardiac health accurately.

Preparing for the BNP Test

Like any other blood test, a BNP (B-type natriuretic peptide) test is a simple procedure that involves collecting a small blood sample from the patient. Before the collection, a healthcare professional will ensure the area is clean using an antiseptic. A needle will be used to draw blood from a vein in the arm during the test.

It's important to note that no special preparations or fasting are required for a BNP test. However, patients may be advised to avoid strenuous exercise before the test. This precaution is recommended as vigorous physical activity can temporarily elevate BNP levels, potentially affecting the test's accuracy.

By taking this precaution, healthcare professionals can ensure the most reliable and accurate interpretation of the BNP test, aiding in the effective management and diagnosis of cardiovascular conditions.

What do the results mean?

The BNP test measures brain-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels in the blood. BNP is a hormone the heart produces that regulates fluid balance and pressure.

Here are the  possible interpretations of the BNP test results:

  • Normal: In healthy individuals, the levels of BNP in the blood are usually less than 100 pg/mL.
  • Elevated: Higher than normal levels of BNP may indicate heart failure, a condition where the heart is not pumping enough blood to meet the body's needs. Other conditions that can cause elevated BNP include kidney, lung, high blood pressure, and coronary artery disease.
  • Extremely high: Extremely high levels of BNP (more than 500 pg/mL) are a strong indicator of acute heart failure. In this case, immediate medical attention is required to prevent life-threatening complications.

The results of a BNP blood test can also help distinguish between different types of heart failure. For example, congestive heart failure often presents with high BNP levels, while low BNP levels may indicate other causes, such as lung disease or kidney problems.

Other tests for heart failure

In addition to a BNP test, you may also use other blood tests to diagnose heart failure. These include measuring levels of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) and other natriuretic peptides. These hormones are secreted by the vessels in response to changes in the blood's pressure and volume.

Other common diagnostic tests for heart failure include imaging tests such as echocardiograms and heart stress tests. These can provide valuable information about the structure and function of the heart, allowing you to identify any abnormalities or signs of reduced cardiac output. Heart TEE tests are also commonly used to evaluate the functioning of the heart valves and to assess any potential blockages in blood vessels

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American College of Cardiology. (2017, May 10). Role of Biomarkers for the Prevention, Assessment, and Management. ACC.

What does a high BNP level mean?
What does a high BNP level mean?

Commonly asked questions

What does a high BNP level mean?

A high BNP level typically indicates the presence of heart failure or other forms of cardiac strain. It is important to note that factors such as age, kidney function, and certain medications can also affect BNP levels.

What is a normal BNP by age?

Normal BNP levels can vary depending on age and other factors, but generally, a BNP level below 100 pg/mL is considered normal. However, it's important to note that this range may differ slightly between laboratories.

Is BNP a marker of heart failure?

Yes, BNP is considered a biomarker for heart failure and can help healthcare professionals diagnose and manage the condition. However, it should not be used as the sole diagnostic tool; other factors such as symptoms, medical history, and imaging tests should also be considered.

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