Reliability and prognostic value of traditional signs and symptoms in outpatients with congestive heart failure

Luís E Rohde, Luís Beck-da-Silva, Lívia Goldraich, Thaís C Grazziotin, Dora V Palombini, Carisi A Polanczyk, Nadine Clausell
Canadian Journal of Cardiology 2004 May 15, 20 (7): 697-702

BACKGROUND: Previous validation studies of congestive heart failure (CHF) signs and symptoms were performed in acute settings. Few data have supported the validity of CHF clinical findings during the chronic stages of the disease. This study was designed to evaluate the reliability and prognostic value of traditional signs and symptoms in stable CHF outpatients.

METHODS: Sixty CHF outpatients who underwent 102 simultaneous clinical and echocardiographic evaluations were prospectively examined. A clinical congestion score was built summing all grades of CHF signs and symptoms. Hemodynamic parameters were estimated according to previously validated echocardiography-based protocols. Major cardiac events were evaluated after 180 days.

RESULTS: Most CHF patients were male (67%), middle-aged (56+/-15 years) and in Specific Activity Scale functional classes I to II (70%). Isolated clinical findings demonstrated limited sensitivity and specificity to identify hemodynamic parameters. Absence of all signs of congestion, however, had a predictive value of 95% for a left atrial pressure less than 20 mmHg. Patients with no CHF signs or symptoms (score of 0) had significantly lower right (P<0.001) and left (P=0.03) atrial pressures compared with those with higher scores (scores of at least 5). In multivariate analysis, a congestion score of at least 3 (RR 4.8, 95% CI 1.3 to 17.4, P=0.02) and beta-blockers use (P=0.02) remained associated with future cardiac events.

CONCLUSIONS: Although CHF signs and symptoms did not accurately identify hemodynamic parameters, combined data from history and physical examination provided meaningful information to guide clinical decisions and for prognostication.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"