Umsetzung von diagnostischen Empfehlungen bei Herzinsuffizienz

2010 | journal article; research paper. A publication of Göttingen

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​Umsetzung von diagnostischen Empfehlungen bei Herzinsuffizienz​
Korb, K.; Hummers-Pradier, E. ; Stich, K. M.; Chenot, J. & Scherer, M.​ (2010) 
Deutsche medizinische Wochenschrift135(4) pp. 120​-124​.​ DOI: 

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Title Variant(s)
Implementation of recommendations for the diagnisis of heart failure
Korb, Katrin; Hummers-Pradier, Eva ; Stich, Kathrin Monika; Chenot, J.; Scherer, M.
Background: National and international guidelines for the management of congestive heart failure (HF) suggest a variety of procedures for establishing its diagnosis and monitoring its course. The aim of this crosssectional study was to investigate which of these recommendations were actually implemented and documented in the setting of general medical practice. Methods: Patients receiving at least one cardiovascular drug (World health [WHO] anatomical chemical classification [ATC] class C) were identified from electronic medical records from 5 general practices from 1.4.2001 to 1.10.2004. Those patients with the documented diagnosis of HF were selected. All patients' records were reviewed and those diagnostic procedures and clinical findings were recorded on a standarized data extraction form that had been used to establish the diagnosis of HF. Results: An electrocardiogram had been documented or retrieved in the chart in 41.2% of a total of 829 patients, an chest X-ray in 28.2%, an echocardiogram in 17.2%, and a cardiac catheterization performed in 1.8%. Serum natriuretic peptides were never recorded. Additionally the following symptoms and clinical signs were extracted from the paper chart: ankle edema (39.3%), exertional dyspnea (22.7%), rales (21.5%), cardiomegaly (19.0%), paroxysmal dyspnea (16.6%), pleural effusions (9.2%), tachycardia (6.7%) and acute pulmonary edema, hepatomegaly, nocturnal cough or jugular venous distension in fewer than 5%. Conclusion: Only a few of those clinical signs and diagnostic procedures recommended by guidelines for diagnosing HF were recorded in general practice. The reasons for this finding remain unclear. Even under the assumption that not all observed clinical signs and diagnostic procedures were documented, these findings reflect the actual diagnostic strategy in daily practice. The observed discrepancy between guideline recommendation and reality in everyday practice deserve attention. On the one hand, there is a need for improving the diagnostic approach to HF; on the other, guidelines need to set priorities of the recommendations for diagnosing HF.
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Deutsche medizinische Wochenschrift 
Institut für Allgemeinmedizin 



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