Background. Only limited information about clinical characteristics, diagnostic procedures and therapeutic options is available in patients admitted to an intensive cardiac care unit (ICCU) for heart failure. The aim of this study was to evaluate causes of admission, clinical characteristics, diagnostic and therapeutic options, and outcome of patients admitted for heart failure in the ICCU network. Methods. The BLITZ-3 Registry prospectively included patients admitted by 332 Italian ICCUs. Data of the patients admitted with a principal diagnosis of heart failure are analyzed. Results. From April 7 to 20, 2008, 6986 consecutive patients with acute cardiac conditions were admitted to ICCUs; 966 (14%) out of 6986 patients were admitted for acute heart failure. Heart failure was the second cause of admission after acute coronary syndromes (52%). Mean age of patients admitted for heart failure was 73 years, 42% were female, and diabetes accounted for 32% of heart failure patients. Most patients were admitted to the emergency department (62%), and were discharged by the cardiology ward (65%). Median length of stay in the ICCU was 4 days, and during the stay in ICCU 5% of the patients with heart failure died. Advanced age and elevated creatinine values were associated with a higher risk of death. Echocardiography was performed in 79% of heart failure patients, coronary angiography in 10%, assisted ventilation in 15%, ultrafiltration in 3%, and right catheterization in 1%. Diuretics were administered in 93% of patients admitted for acute heart failure, intravenous nitrates in 41%, inotropes in 22%, beta-blockers in 42%, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers in 66%. Conclusions. In a nationwide survey, acute heart failure accounted for 14% of hospital admissions in ICCUs. Patients admitted for heart failure are usually old, with frequent comorbidities. Diagnostic and therapeutic procedures are rarely used, with the exception of echocardiography.
|Translated title of the contribution||Patients with heart failure in Italian cardiology intensive care unit: Data from the BLITZ-3 study|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Giornale Italiano di Cardiologia|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2012|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine