PATIENTS with chronic ischaemic cardiovascular disease have poor outcomes after being seen by a health professional, according to research by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). Nearly a quarter of the patients included in the study had either died or were hospitalised within 6 months, with a lower rate of prescriptions for recommended medications potentially playing a major role in this.
The Chronic Ischaemic Cardiovascular Disease (CICD) Pilot Registry observed the outcomes of 2,420 stable coronary disease or peripheral artery disease patients from 100 hospitals and outpatient clinics across 10 European countries. Of the 2,203 patients for whom follow-up data were available, after 6 months 522 (24%) had died or been hospitalised, which was caused by cardiovascular conditions in the majority of cases. The most significant risk factors were older age, peripheral revascularisation, chronic kidney disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Worryingly, the researchers found that compared with the start of the study, the rate of prescriptions of angiotensin converting inhibitors, beta-blockers, and aspirin, was much lower. Although the study did not look at why this happened, the team believe that possible reasons include prescriptions not being renewed due to insufficient handover of these patients to a cardiologist or GP, patients getting fed up of taking pills, or patients being unable to afford their medications.
The researchers therefore believe that greater efforts should be made to ensure patients with this disease are properly followed-up following a hospital or outpatient appointment. Lead author, Prof Michel Komajda, University Pierre and Marie Curie, Paris, France, commented: “The study shows that patients with chronic ischaemic cardiovascular disease have a high risk of poor short-term outcomes. Yet some are not receiving recommended preventative medications which could improve their outlook. More efforts are needed to ensure that these patients continue to be monitored and treated after they leave hospital or an outpatient appointment.”
Variations Across Regions
A further finding of the study was that the rates of death and re-hospitalisation were significantly lower in southern European countries compared with those in other parts of Europe, which could be related to diet and lifestyle reasons.
James Coker, Reporter
For the source, and further information about the study, click here.