Health related quality of life in coronary patients and its association with their cardiovascular risk profile: Results from the EUROASPIRE III survey.

BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular patients are likely to have an impaired health-related quality of life (HRQoL) due to functional and psycho-social limitations. The main objective of this study was to assess the distribution of HRQoL scores in coronary heart disease (CHD) patients across 22 European countries and to identify factors associated with the variation between patients. METHODS: Data from the EUROASPIRE III survey (European Action on Secondary and Primary Prevention by Intervention to Reduce Events), on 8734 patients, were used. Patients with a diagnosis of CHD (coronary artery bypass graft (CABG), percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), acute myocardial infarction (AMI) or myocardial ischemia) were interviewed and examined at least 6months after their acute coronary event. Quality of life of each patient was measured using 2 standardized questionnaires: the EuroQoL-5D (EQ-5D) and the 12-item short-form health survey (SF-12v2). RESULTS: HRQoL values differed significantly across countries. Lower HRQoL estimates were found in women, older patients, less educated patients, patients with myocardial infarction or ischemia as recruiting diagnosis, patients with a history of stroke and patients who suffered from a recurring CHD event. In addition, HRQoL was significantly associated with current smoking, central obesity, lack of exercise and inappropriate HbA1c control in patients with diabetes. Furthermore the number of risk factors is inversely associated with HRQoL. CONCLUSION: Overall, a large heterogeneity was observed in HRQoL values between countries and patient groups. There seems to be a significant association between quality of life and patient characteristics with lifestyle risk factors as important determinants of HRQoL.