Physical health status measures predict all-cause mortality in patients with heart failure

Alanna M. Chamberlain, Sheila M. McNallan, Shannon M. Dunlay, John A. Spertus, Margaret M. Redfield, Debra K. Moser, Robert L. Kane, Susan A. Weston, Véronique L. Roger

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29 Scopus citations


Background-Physical health status measures have been shown to predict death in heart failure (HF); however, few studies found significant associations after adjustment for confounders, and most were not representative of all HF patients. Methods and Results-HF patients from southeastern MN were prospectively enrolled between 10/2007 and 12/2010, completed a 12-item Short Form Health Survey (SF-12) and a 6-minute walk, and were followed through 2011 for death from any cause. Scores ≤25 on the SF-12 physical component indicated low self-reported physical functioning, and the first question of the SF-12 measured self-rated general health. Low functional exercise capacity was defined as ≤300 m walked during a 6-minute walk. Over a mean follow-up of 2.3 years, 86 deaths occurred among the 352 participants. A 1.6-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.0-2.7) and 1.8-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.1-2.9) increased risk of death was observed among patients with low self-reported physical functioning and low functional exercise capacity, respectively. Poor self-rated general health corresponded to a 2.7-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.5-4.9) increased risk of death compared with good to excellent general health. All measures equally discriminated between who would die and who would survive (C-statistics: 0.729, 0.750, and 0.740 for self-reported physical functioning, self-rated general health, and functional exercise capacity, respectively). Conclusions-Three physical health status measures, captured by the SF-12 and a 6-minute walk, equally predict death among community HF patients. Therefore, the first question of the SF-12, which is the least burdensome to administer, may be sufficient to identify HF patients at greatest risk of death.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)669-675
Number of pages7
JournalCirculation: Heart Failure
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Health status
  • Heart failure
  • Mortality
  • Physical functioning
  • Survival


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