(HealthDay News) – Patient-reported health status is a currently underutilized measure of cardiovascular health that can predict health outcomes and inform decision making, according to a scientific statement published online May 6 in Circulation.

Noting that measures of cardiovascular health beyond mortality and morbidity have not been specified, John S. Rumsfeld, MD, PhD, from the Denver VA Medical Center, and colleagues discuss the use of patient-reported health status as a measure of cardiovascular health.

The authors note that patient health status includes three components: symptom burden (type and frequency as a manifestation of disease or medical treatment), functional status (physical, mental/emotional, and social), and health-related quality of life. Patient self-report best captures most aspects of patient health status, but there is a need for use of standardized tools to evaluate patient-reported health status. Although valid surveys have been developed for patients with cardiovascular disease which quantify all aspects of patient health status, these are underused in clinical studies. As well as cardiovascular-specific factors that contribute to patient health status, cofactors such as depression should also be considered. In addition to measuring health outcomes, patient health status is a robust predictor of health outcomes, including mortality, cardiovascular events, and costs of care. Patient health status can potentially inform decision making and may be useful for risk adjustment and in targeting health care resources.

“This statement advocates for the broader inclusion of patient-reported health status as a key measure of cardiovascular health in clinical research, clinical practice, and disease surveillance,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the biopharmaceutical and medical device industries.

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