Abstract 03: Outpatient Care Preceding Incident Heart Failure (HF) and Implications for Long-Term Outcomes. The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study
Hypothesis: We hypothesized that outpatient management of patients at risk for a HF hospitalization is associated with lower mortality following an incident HF hospitalization.
Methods: Patterns of outpatient visits prior to incident HF hospitalization were assessed among CMS Medicare beneficiaries with continuous fee-for-service eligibility residing during 2003-2006 in four geographic areas of CVD surveillance conducted by the ARIC Study. Incident HF hospitalization was defined as hospitalization with ICD9 code 428.x with no HF hospitalizations in preceding 2 years. Outpatient visits to primary care physicians, general internists, or cardiologists were identified from Carrier files. A comorbidity score was calculated from ICD9 codes at the time of incident HF hospitalization. Cox proportional hazard models adjusted for age, comorbidity score, gender, and race were used to estimate mortality.
Results: Mean age among beneficiaries with observed incident HF hospitalization (n=2006; 90.4% white, 45.1% male) was 79.8 years (SD 7.4). Mean comorbidity score was 3.6 (SD 1.9). Mean number of outpatient physician visits occurring in two years preceding the incident HF hospitalization, was 9.6 (SD 9.0); 19.6% beneficiaries had no observed prior outpatient physician visits. Risk of death within one year of incident HF hospitalization was greater among those with no preceding outpatient physician visits as compared to those with at least one physician visit (adjusted HR=1.81 (95% CI 1.50, 2.18); Figure). Adjustment for the presence of an outpatient visit within 2 weeks following the HF hospitalization attenuated the risk of death (HR=1.56 (1.29, 1.89)).
Conclusion: Lack of outpatient care in two years prior to a HF-related hospitalization is associated with increased mortality within one year following hospitalization. Further inquiry is warranted to assess whether the association reflects diversity in causes/manifestations of HF, ambulatory care received in ED settings, or benefits associated with outpatient care.
Author Disclosures: A. Kucharska-Newton: None. L. Chambless: None. R. Camplain: None. C. Cuthbertson: None. P. Chang: None. S. Agarwal: None. L. Wruck: None. N. Allen: None. E. Shahar: None. A. Bertoni: None. G. Heiss: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.