The ventilatory classification system effectively predicts hospitalization in patients with heart failure

Ross Arena, Jonathan Myers, Joshua Abella, Mary Ann Peberdy, Daniel Bensimhon, Paul Chase, Marco Guazzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


■ INTRODUCTION: The minute ventilation carbon dioxide production (VE/VCO2) slope is a consistent and robust prognostic marker in the heart failure (HF) population. The purpose of this study was to assess the ability of the newly developed ventilatory classification system, a powerful predictor of major cardiac events (mortality, transplantation, and left ventricular assist device implantation), to identify varying degrees of risk for cardiac-related hospitalization. ■ METHODS: A total of 459 patients with chronic HF who underwent cardiopulmonary exercise testing were included in this analysis. The VE/VCO2 slope was determined, and participants were classified into 1 of 4 groups (ventilatory class [VC]-I: ≤29.9; VC-II: 30.0-35.9; VC-III: 36.0-44.9; and VC-IV: ≥45.0). Participants were tracked for cardiac-related hospitalization for 2 years following testing. ■ RESULTS: There were 169 cardiac-related hospitalizations during the 2-year tracking period (annual event rate = 21.6%). Decompensated HF, cardiac ischemia, and cardiac arrhythmia were the reasons for hospitalization in 83%, 11%, and 6% of the cases, respectively. Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed that the VC system was prognostically significant (log-rank = 85.2, P <.001) and superior to the Weber classification system (log-rank = 70.0, P <.001). ■ DISCUSSION: This study indicates that the VC system, based on the VE/VCO 2 slope, effectively identifies patients with HF at varying degrees of risk for cardiac-related hospitalization. Furthermore, this newly developed system prognostically outperformed the established Weber classification system based on peak oxygen uptake.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-198
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2008



  • Exercise testing
  • Prognosis
  • Ventilatory efficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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