Abstract 11886: The Impact of Poor Understanding of Heart Failure and Its Symptoms on Self-care
Introduction: A comprehensive understanding of heart failure (HF) and its symptoms is one of the goals of patient education. Patients cannot be expected to adequately perform self-care and respond to symptoms appropriately with incomplete understanding of HF and its symptoms.
Purpose: To examine whether levels of understanding of HF and its symptoms predicts self-care in HF patients who had a recent hospitalization for HF symptoms.
Methods: Patients with HF (N=577, mean 66 years, 41% female, 35% NYHA III/IV) completed the 9-item European HF Self-care Behavior scale to assess self-care. The HF Knowledge Questionnaire was used to assess knowledge of HF and its symptoms. Three groups were formed by their different levels of understanding of HF and its symptoms: poor, moderate, and complete. Linear regression was used to determine whether levels of understanding of HF and its symptoms predicted self-care after controlling for age, gender, education, marital status, comorbidity, NYHA functional class, and depressive symptoms.
Results: Of 577 patients, 16% and 32% of the patients had poor and moderate understanding of HF and its symptoms, respectively. Levels of understanding of HF and its symptoms independently predicted self-care. Compared with patients with complete understanding, those with poor and moderate understanding were more likely to inadequately perform self-care (standardized β=0.24 and 95% CI 3.39-6.48; standardized β=0.12 95% CI 0.53-2.93, respectively).
Conclusions: A large minority of patients with HF had poor or moderate understanding of HF and its symptoms. Levels of understanding of HF and its symptoms predicted poor self-care behaviors in these patients. Thus, patient education must be designed to help patients achieve a thorough understanding of the disease and its symptoms to ensure successful self-care among HF patients.
Author Disclosures: K. Lee: None. D.K. Moser: Research Grant; Significant; NINR. K. Dracup: Research Grant; Significant; NINR.
- © 2016 by American Heart Association, Inc.