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Function Predicts Mortality in Peripheral Artery Disease

Office-based tests predictive, independent of the ankle brachial index

TUESDAY, April 8 (HealthDay News) -- Office-based measures of walking ability can predict mortality independently of the ankle brachial index in patients with peripheral artery disease, according to the results of a study published in the April 15 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Mary M. McDermott, M.D., from Northwestern University in Chicago, and colleagues examined whether performance on the 6-minute and 4-minute walk test could predict mortality independently of the ankle brachial index in 444 patients with peripheral artery disease.

After 4.8 years, 28.6 percent of patients died. The researchers found that after adjusting for a number of confounders, patients in the bottom quartile of 6-minute walk distance had a higher risk of total (hazard ratio 2.36) and cardiovascular mortality (HR, 5.59) compared with patients in the top quartile. Similar results were found for normal-paced 4-minute walking velocity, with a higher risk of total (HR, 1.86) and cardiovascular mortality (HR, 2.55) for the bottom quartile compared with the top quartile.

"This study demonstrates for the first time that performance-based measures, which can be administered in an office setting, provide prognostic information regarding mortality in persons with peripheral arterial disease beyond that provided by the ankle brachial index," McDermott and colleagues conclude.

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