A novel cardiac output response to stress test developed to improve diagnosis and monitoring of heart failure in primary care.

22 Jun 2018

AIMS: Primary care physicians lack access to an objective cardiac function test. This study for the first time describes a novel cardiac output response to stress (CORS) test developed to improve diagnosis and monitoring of heart failure in primary care and investigates its reproducibility. METHODS AND RESULTS: Prospective observational study recruited 32 consecutive primary care patients (age, 63 ± 9 years; female, n = 18). Cardiac output was measured continuously using the bioreactance method in supine and standing positions and during two 3 min stages of a step-exercise protocol (10 and 15 steps per minute) using a 15 cm height bench. The CORS test was performed on two occasions, i.e. Test 1 and Test 2. There was no significant difference between repeated measures of cardiac output and stroke volume at supine standing and Stage 1 and Stage 2 step exercises (all P > 0.3). There was a significant positive relationship between Test 1 and Test 2 cardiac outputs (r = 0.92, P = 0.01 with coefficient of variation of 7.1%). The mean difference in cardiac output (with upper and lower limits of agreement) between Test 1 and Test 2 was 0.1 (-1.9 to 2.1) L/min, combining supine, standing, and step-exercise data. CONCLUSIONS: The CORS, as a novel test for objective evaluation of cardiac function, demonstrates acceptable reproducibility and can potentially be implemented in primary care.