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Fragility Impacts Quality of Life in Heart Failure

Link between QoL score and presence of fragility, fragility components seen in younger, older patients

Fragility Impacts Quality of Life in Heart Failure

TUESDAY, Dec. 3, 2013 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with heart failure, fragility is associated with the perception of quality of life, according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

Paloma Gastelurrutia, Ph.D., from the Germans Trias i Pujol Health Research Institute in Badalona, Spain, and colleagues examined whether fragility affects the perception of quality of life in outpatients with heart failure. Quality of life was assessed for 1,405 outpatients with heart failure (27.8 percent women; median age, 69 years) using the Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire (MLWHFQ).

The researchers found that 44.2 percent of patients had fragility, defined as at least one abnormal evaluation, with the most prevalent component of fragility (31.2 percent) being a positive depression response on the abbreviated Geriatric Depression Scale. MLWHFQ score was strongly correlated with the presence of fragility and fragility components (all associations P < 0.001). In both younger (<75 years) and older (≥75 years) patients, these associations prevailed. Quality of life remained significantly associated with fragility in multivariate analysis, after adjustment for age, gender, etiology of heart failure, left ventricular ejection faction, New York Heart Association functional class, comorbidities, and heart failure treatment, in older and younger patients (P < 0.001).

"In conclusion, MLWHFQ, a specific heart failure quality-of-life questionnaire, is significantly influenced by fragility regardless of age," the authors write.

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