Randomised controlled trial of specialist nurse intervention in heart failure

L. Blue, E. Lang, J. J V McMurray*, A. P. Davie, T. A. McDonagh, D. R. Murdoch, M. C. Petrie, E. Connolly, J. Norrie, C. E. Round, I. Ford, C. E. Morrison

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To determine whether specialist nurse intervention improves outcome in patients with chronic heart failure. Design: Randomised controlled trial. Setting: Acute medical admissions unit in a teaching hospital. Participants: 165 patients admitted with heart failure due to left ventricular systolic dysfunction. The intervention started before discharge and continued thereafter with home visits for up to 1 year. Main outcome measures: Time to first event analysis of death from all causes or readmission to hospital with worsening heart failure. Results: 31 patients (37%) in the intervention group died or were readmitted with heart failure compared with 45 (53%) in the usual care group (hazard ratio=0.61, 95% confidence interval 0.33 to 0.96). Compared with usual care, patients in the intervention group had fewer readmissions for any reason (86 ν 114, P=0.018), fewer admissions for heart failure (19 ν 45, P<0.001) and spent fewer days in hospital for heart failure (mean 3.43 ν 7.46 days, P=0.0051). Conclusions: Specially trained nurses can improve the outcome of patients admitted to hospital with heart failure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-718
Number of pages4
JournalBritish Medical Journal
Issue number7315
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sep 2001


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