Document Detail

Symptoms experienced in the last six months of life in patients with end-stage heart failure.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  14622629     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Despite today's modern therapy, the advancement of chronic heart failure (CHF) has not been curbed (Dying from heart failure: lessons from palliative care, BMJ, 317, 1998, 961-962, Editorial). Consequently, the suffering in patients with end-stage CHF is still present. The knowledge on the frequency of symptoms in these patients is scarce. AIMS: The aim of this study was to achieve a deeper understanding of patients with end-stage CHF and to describe symptoms in these patients during the last 6 months of life by examining documentation in medical records. METHODS: The study adopted a descriptive, retrospective design using record reviews to collect data, in which 80 medical records of patients hospitalised for CHF in 1995 were reviewed. Descriptive statistics and Student's t-tests were performed. RESULTS: Breathlessness was the most common symptom (men 90%, women 86%). The largest gender difference was on limitation in physical activity (men=77%, women=37%, total=49%, P=0.001). CONCLUSION: (1) Twenty-one symptoms were observed, implicating that, patients with CHF in later stages of the disease experience a wide range of symptoms. (2) Despite the fact that several symptoms were documented by both nurses and physicians, it is quite remarkable that symptom-controlling measures were only provided sparingly. (3) A palliative care approach may benefit patients suffering from end-stage CHF.
Lena Nordgren; Stefan Sörensen
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  European journal of cardiovascular nursing : journal of the Working Group on Cardiovascular Nursing of the European Society of Cardiology     Volume:  2     ISSN:  1474-5151     ISO Abbreviation:  Eur J Cardiovasc Nurs     Publication Date:  2003 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-11-18     Completed Date:  2003-12-19     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101128793     Medline TA:  Eur J Cardiovasc Nurs     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  213-7     Citation Subset:  IM; N    
Department of Caring and Public Health Sciences, Mälardalen University, Västerås, Karpvägen 6, Kvicksund 640 45, Sweden.
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MeSH Terms
Activities of Daily Living
Aged, 80 and over
Anorexia / etiology
Anxiety / epidemiology,  etiology*,  prevention & control
Constipation / etiology
Cough / etiology
Documentation / standards
Dyspnea / epidemiology,  etiology*,  prevention & control
Fatigue / epidemiology,  etiology*,  prevention & control
Heart Failure / complications*,  physiopathology,  psychology
Nausea / etiology
Pain / epidemiology,  etiology*,  prevention & control
Palliative Care / methods
Retrospective Studies
Sex Distribution
Sleep Disorders / etiology
Sweden / epidemiology

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