Shared medical appointments: Translating research into practice for patients treated with ablation therapy for atrial fibrillation.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


People with atrial fibrillation (AF) have lower reported quality of life and increased risk of heart attack, death, and stroke. Lifestyle modifications can improve arrhythmia-free survival/symptom severity. Shared medical appointments (SMAs) have been effective at targeting lifestyle change in other chronic diseases and may be beneficial for patients with AF.


To determine if perceived self-management and satisfaction with provider communication differed between patients who participated in SMAs compared to patients in standard care. Secondary objectives were to examine differences between groups for knowledge about AF, symptom severity, and healthcare utilization.


We conducted a retrospective analysis of data collected where patients were assigned to either standard care (n = 62) or a SMA (n = 59). Surveys were administered at pre-procedure, 3, and 6 months.


Perceived self-management was not significantly different at baseline (p = 0.95) or 6 months (p = 0.21). Patients in SMAs reported more knowledge gain at baseline (p = 0.01), and higher goal setting at 6 months (p = 0.0045). Symptom severity for both groups followed similar trends.


Patients with AF who participated in SMAs had similar perceived self-management, patient satisfaction with provider communication, symptom severity, and healthcare utilization with their counterparts, but had a statistically significant improvement in knowledge about their disease.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Schmidt, MM; Griffin, JM; McCabe, P; Stuart-Mullen, L; Branda, M; OByrne, TJ; Bowers, M; Trotter, K; McLeod, C

Published Date

  • January 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 16 / 2

Start / End Page

  • e0246861 -

PubMed ID

  • 33577612

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7880477

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0246861


  • eng