Predictors of Physician Under-Recognition of Angina in Outpatients With Stable Coronary Artery Disease.
BACKGROUND: Under-recognition of angina by physicians may result in undertreatment with revascularization or medications that could improve patients' quality of life. We sought to describe characteristics associated with under-recognition of patients' angina. METHODS AND RESULTS: Patients with coronary disease from 25 US cardiology outpatient practices completed the Seattle Angina Questionnaire before their clinic visit, quantifying their frequency of angina during the previous month. Immediately after the clinic visit, physicians independently quantified their patients' angina. Angina frequency was categorized as none, monthly, and daily/weekly. Among 1257 patients, 411 reported angina in the previous month, of whom 173 (42%) were under-recognized by their physician, defined as the physician reporting a lower frequency category of angina than the patient. In a hierarchical logistic model, heart failure (odds ratio, 3.06, 95% confidence interval, 1.89-4.95) and less-frequent angina (odds ratio for monthly angina [versus daily/weekly], 1.69; 95% confidence interval, 1.12-2.56) were associated with greater odds of under-recognition. No other patient or physician factors were associated with under-recognition. Significant variability across physicians (median odds ratio, 2.06) was observed. CONCLUSIONS: Under-recognition of angina is common in routine clinical practice. Although patients with less-frequent angina and those with heart failure more often had their angina under-recognized, most variation was unrelated to patient and physician characteristics. The large variation across physicians suggests that some physicians are more accurate in assessing angina frequency than others. Standardized prospective use of a validated clinical tool, such as the Seattle Angina Questionnaire, should be tested as a means to improve recognition of angina and, potentially, improve appropriate treatment of angina.
Arnold, SV; Grodzinsky, A; Gosch, KL; Kosiborod, M; Jones, PG; Breeding, T; Towheed, A; Beltrame, J; Alexander, KP; Spertus, JA
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