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Articles by E. D Peterson
Total Records ( 18 ) for E. D Peterson
  V Vaccarino , L Parsons , E. D Peterson , W. J Rogers , C. I Kiefe and J. Canto

Background  Previous studies have shown that women younger than 55 years have higher hospital mortality rates after acute myocardial infarction (MI) than age-matched men. We examined whether such mortality differences have decreased in recent years.

Methods  We investigated temporal trends in the hospital case-fatality rates of MI by sex and age from June 1, 1994, through December 31, 2006. The study population included 916 380 patients from the National Registry of Myocardial Infarction with a confirmed diagnosis of MI.

Results  In-hospital mortality decreased markedly between 1994 and 2006 in all patients but more so in women than men. The mortality reduction in 2006 relative to 1994 was largest in women younger than 55 years (52.9%) and lowest in men younger than 55 years (33.3%). In patients younger than 55 years, the absolute decrease in mortality was 3 times larger in women than men (2.7% vs 0.9%). As a result, the excess mortality in younger women (<55 years) compared with men was less pronounced in 2004-2006 (unadjusted odds ratio, 1.32; 95% confidence interval, 1.07-1.67) than it was in 1994-1995 (unadjusted odds ratio, 1.93; 95% confidence interval, 1.67-2.24). The sex difference in mortality decrease was lower in older patients (P = .004 for the interaction among sex, age, and year). Changes in comorbidity and clinical severity features at admission accounted for more than 90% of these mortality trends.

Conclusions  In recent years, women, particularly younger ones, experienced larger improvements in hospital mortality after MI than men. The narrowing of the mortality gap between younger women and men is largely attributable to temporal changes in risk profiles.

  M. Y Chan , J. L Sun , L. K Newby , L. K Shaw , M Lin , E. D Peterson , R. M Califf , D. F Kong and M. T. Roe

Background— There are limited contemporary data comparing long-term outcomes after cardiac catheterization for ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and non-STEMI (NSTEMI).

Methods and Results— We studied patients undergoing cardiac catheterization for STEMI (n=2413) and NSTEMI (n=1974) between 1999 and 2005 with at least 1 significant coronary lesion ≥75%. We compared adjusted mortality rates over restricted time intervals and the differential impact of early revascularization on mortality stratified by ST-elevation status. Between 1999 and 2007, 1274 patients died, with a median follow-up of 4 years. A piece-wise analysis showed a higher adjusted mortality risk for STEMI during the first 2 months (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.85; 95% confidence interval, 1.45 to 2.38) and a lower adjusted mortality risk for STEMI after 2 months (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.68; 95% confidence interval, 0.59 to 0.83). Compared with late or no revascularization, early revascularization was associated with a lower adjusted risk of mortality for both STEMI (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.73; 95% confidence interval, 0.58 to 0.90) and NSTEMI (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.76; 95% confidence interval, 0.65 to 0.89) (P for interaction=0.22).

Conclusions— Among a contemporary cohort of acute MI patients with significant coronary disease during cardiac catheterization, STEMI was associated with a higher risk of short-term mortality, but NSTEMI was associated with a higher risk of long-term mortality. Early revascularization was associated with a similar improvement in long-term outcomes for both STEMI and NSTEMI. These data suggest that in clinical investigations of early revascularization among patients with NSTEMI, extended follow-up may be necessary to demonstrate treatment benefit.

  S. K Pasquali , M Hall , J. S Li , E. D Peterson , J Jaggers , A. J Lodge , B. S Marino , D. M Goodman and S. S. Shah

Children undergoing congenital heart surgery often receive corticosteroids with the aim of reducing the inflammatory response after cardiopulmonary bypass; however, the value of this approach is unclear.

Methods and Results—

The Pediatric Health Information Systems Database was used to evaluate outcomes associated with corticosteroids in children (0 to 18 years of age) undergoing congenital heart surgery at 38 US centers from 2003 to 2008. Propensity scores were constructed to account for potential confounders: age, sex, race, prematurity, genetic syndrome, type of surgery (Risk Adjustment in Congenital Heart Surgery [RACHS-1] category), center, and center volume. Multivariable analysis, adjusting for propensity score and individual covariates, was performed to evaluate in-hospital mortality, postoperative length of stay, duration of ventilation, infection, and use of insulin. A total of 46 730 children were included; 54% received corticosteroids. In multivariable analysis, there was no difference in mortality among corticosteroid recipients and nonrecipients (odds ratio, 1.13; 95% confidence interval, 0.98 to 1.30). Corticosteroids were associated with longer length of stay (least square mean difference, 2.18 days; 95% confidence interval, 1.62 to 2.74 days), greater infection (odds ratio, 1.27; 95% confidence interval, 1.10 to 1.46), and greater use of insulin (odds ratio, 2.45; 95% confidence interval, 2.24 to 2.67). There was no difference in duration of ventilation. In analysis stratified by RACHS-1 category, no significant benefit was seen in any group, and the association of corticosteroids with increased morbidity was most prominent in RACHS-1 categories 1 through 3.


In this observational analysis of children undergoing congenital heart surgery, we were unable to demonstrate a significant benefit associated with corticosteroids and found that corticosteroids may be associated with increased morbidity, particularly in lower-risk patients.

  P Kaul , S Medvedev , S. F Hohmann , P. S Douglas , E. D Peterson and M. R. Patel

Invasive and noninvasive cardiovascular imaging is beneficial in the care of patients admitted with acute myocardial infarction. Little is known about patients' cumulative radiation exposure.

Methods and Results—

All patients admitted with an acute myocardial infarction to any of 49 University HealthSystem Consortium member hospitals from 2006 to 2009 were reviewed for inpatient procedures involving ionizing radiation that included chest radiograph, computed tomogram scans, radionuclide imaging, diagnostic cardiac catheterization, and percutaneous coronary intervention. The average cumulative effective radiation dose per patient was estimated on the basis of published typical effective radiation doses for imaging procedures. Patients (n=64 071) admitted for acute myocardial infarction had a median age of 64.9 years. A total of 276 651 procedures involving ionizing radiation were performed during the study period, a median of 4.3 procedures per patient per admission. The majority of patients had invasive catheterization (77%), followed by computed tomogram scans (52%), mostly body examinations. The median cumulative effective radiation dose delivered was 15.02 mSv per patient per acute myocardial infarction admission. Postprocedural bleeding was a significant predictor of radiation exposure (odds ratio, 2.01; 95% confidence interval, 1.85 to 2.18), together with postprocedural mechanical complications resulting from device implantation (odds ratio, 2.86; 95% confidence interval, 2.61 to 3.13). Patients with higher underlying clinical complexity (defined by severity of illness scores) had higher radiation exposure and higher mortality (P<0.0001). There was also significant geographic variation in radiation exposure; patients in New England received the lowest cumulative exposure (odds ratio, 0.78; 95% confidence interval, 0.74 to 0.81).


Acute myocardial infarction inpatients are exposed to an approximate median radiation dose of 15 mSv. This exposure is a result of multiple cardiovascular and noncardiovascular procedures. Efforts should be made to understand the risks and benefits of radiation exposure per episode of care for acute myocardial infarction.

  G. C Fonarow , T Gregory , M Driskill , M. D Stewart , C Beam , J Butler , A. K Jacobs , N. M Meltzer , E. D Peterson , L. H Schwamm , J. A Spertus , C. W Yancy , G. F Tomaselli and R. L. Sacco

Cardiovascular disease and stroke remain leading causes of mortality, disability, and rising healthcare expenditures in the United States. Although a number of organizations provide hospital accreditation, recognition, and certification programs, existing programs do not address cardiovascular disease and stroke care in a comprehensive way. Current evidence suggests mixed findings for correlation between accreditation, recognition, and certification programs and hospitals' actual quality of care and outcomes. This advisory discusses potential opportunities to develop and enhance hospital certification programs for cardiovascular disease and stroke. The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association is uniquely positioned as a patient-centered, respected, transparent healthcare organization to help drive improvements in care and outcomes for patients hospitalized with cardiovascular disease and stroke. As a part of its commitment to promoting high-quality, evidence-based care for cardiovascular and stroke patients, it is recommended that the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association explore hospital certification programs to develop truly meaningful programs to facilitate improvements in and recognition for cardiovascular disease and stroke quality of care and outcomes. Future strategies should standardize objective, unbiased assessments of hospital structural, process, and outcome performance while allowing flexibility as technology and methodology advances occur.

  S. K Mehta , A. D Frutkin , J. B Lindsey , J. A House , J. A Spertus , S. V Rao , F. S Ou , M. T Roe , E. D Peterson , S. P Marso and on Behalf of the National Cardiovascular Data Registry

Background— Bleeding in patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is associated with increased morbidity, mortality, length of hospitalization, and cost. We identified baseline clinical characteristics associated with bleeding complications after PCI and developed a simplified, clinically useful algorithm to predict patient risk.

Methods and Results— Data were analyzed from 302 152 PCI procedures performed at 440 US centers participating in the National Cardiovascular Data Registry. As defined by the National Cardiovascular Data Registry, bleeding required transfusion, prolonged hospital stay, and/or a drop in hemoglobin >3.0 g/dL from any location, including percutaneous entry site, retroperitoneal, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, and other/unknown location. Bleeding complications occurred in 2.4% of patients. From the best-fitting model consisting of 15 clinical elements associated with post-PCI bleeding in a random 80% training cohort, we developed a parsimonious risk algorithm. Predictors of bleeding included age, gender, previous heart failure, glomerular filtration rate, peripheral vascular disease, no previous PCI, New York Heart Association/Canadian Cardiovascular Society Functional Classification class IV heart failure, ST-elevation myocardial infarction, non–ST-elevation myocardial infarction, and cardiogenic shock. The parsimonious model was validated in the remaining 20% of the population (c-statistic, 0.72) and in clinically relevant subgroups of patients. This simplified model was used to derive a clinical risk algorithm, with larger numbers corresponding with greater risk. In 3 categories, bleeding rates were greater in patients with higher estimates (≤7, 0.7%; 8 to 17, 1.8%; ≥18, 5.1%).

Conclusions— This report identifies baseline clinical factors associated with bleeding and proposes a clinically useful algorithm to estimate bleeding risk. This model is potentially actionable in altering therapeutic decision making and improving outcomes in patients undergoing PCI.

  S. A Halim , J Mulgund , A. Y Chen , M. T Roe , E. D Peterson , W. B Gibler , E. M Ohman and L. K. Newby

Background— Troponin elevation above the upper limit of normal (ULN) is diagnostic of myocardial infarction, but interpretation of "gray-zone" troponin elevations (1 to 1.5x ULN) remains uncertain. Using the CRUSADE database, we explored relationships between sex and treatment and outcomes among patients with troponin 1 to 1.5x ULN.

Methods and Results— We compared treatment and outcomes among women and men using logistic generalized estimating equation method. Overall, 5049 of 85 671 (5.9%) non–ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndromes patients (2156 women, 2893 men) had troponin 1 to 1.5x ULN within 24 hours of presentation. Compared with troponin >1.5x ULN, "gray-zone" patients less often received all guidelines-indicated acute (mean composite score, 63% versus 72%) and discharge therapies (mean composite score, 73% versus 78%), but received them more frequently than patients with troponin <1x ULN (mean composite scores, 58% acute and 67% discharge). Among "gray-zone" patients, acute and discharge therapy use was similar between women and men, except acute aspirin (adjusted odds ratio, 0.80 [95% CI, 0.65 to 0.98]) and discharge angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (adjusted odds ratio, 0.77 [95% CI, 0.67 to 0.88]). "Gray-zone" patients had lower mortality (2.3%) than the >1.5x ULN (4.5%) group but higher than the <1x ULN group (1.1%). Outcomes were similar among "gray-zone" women and men (adjusted odds ratios: death, 0.88 [95% CI, 0.58 to 1.35]; death/myocardial infarction, 0.77 [95% CI, 0.55 to 1.06]; transfusion, 1.04 [95% CI, 0.85 to 1.27]).

Conclusions— Patients with non–ST-segment elevation acute coronary syndromes and low-level troponin elevations had lower overall risk and received less aggressive guidelines-based treatment than those with greater troponin elevations, but treatment patterns were largely similar by sex across troponin elevation groups.

  M. T Roe , A. Y Chen , C. P Cannon , S Rao , J Rumsfeld , D. J Magid , R Brindis , L. W Klein , W. B Gibler , E. M Ohman , E. D Peterson and on behalf of the CRUSADE and ACTION GWTG Registry Participants

Background— The risks of late stent thrombosis with drug-eluting stents (DES) were intensely debated after the presentation of a number of studies highlighting this issue in September 2006. We evaluated trends in the use of DES for patients with non–ST-elevation myocardial infarction undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) from 2006 to 2008.

Methods and Results— Temporal patterns of DES use were examined among non–ST-elevation myocardial infarction patients in the Can Rapid risk stratification of Unstable angina patients Supress ADverse outcomes with Early implementation of the ACC/AHA guidelines (CRUSADE; January 2006 to December 2006) and Acute Coronary Treatment and Intervention Outcomes Network–Get With The Guidelines (ACTION–GWTG; January 2007 to June 2008) registries to determine how practice patterns changed for patients with acute myocardial infarction undergoing PCI. Among the 54 662 patients analyzed, the percentage of patients undergoing PCI by quarter varied from 54% to 58% during the analysis time period. More than 90% of patients undergoing PCI received a DES in the first 3 quarters of 2006 before the public debate about the risks of DES began. Thereafter, the use of DES for PCI patients declined during the fourth quarter of 2006 through the first quarter of 2007 (82% to 67%), gradually declined during quarters 2 to 4 of 2007 (63% to 63% to 59%) but then slightly increased from the first to second quarter of 2008 (58% to 60%). Hospital characteristics did not seem to correlate with temporal changes in DES use, but by the last 2 quarters of the study period, patient characteristics such as white race, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and private or managed care insurance were more common among patients who received a DES compared with the beginning 2 quarters of the study period.

Conclusions— These findings highlight how rapidly treatment decisions in contemporary practice can be affected by public debate related to scientific presentations and publications.

  E. D Peterson , M. T Roe , J. S Rumsfeld , R. E Shaw , R. G Brindis , G. C Fonarow and C. P. Cannon

Background— There is a recognized need for a national unified registry to track presenting features, care, and outcomes for patients with acute myocardial infarction. To address this need, the American Heart Association’s Get With the Guidelines–Coronary Artery Disease program joined the Acute Coronary Treatment and Intervention Outcomes Network (ACTION) Registry to create the National Cardiovascular Data Registry ACTION–Get With the Guidelines (AR-G) in June of 2008. This article outlines the objectives, operational structure, patient population, data elements, data collection methodology, and reporting components of this landmark registry.

Methods and Results— The AR-G was launched in January of 2007. The registry is led by a team of volunteers from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology, and its data coordinating center resides at the Duke Clinical Research Institute. As of December 2008, 344 US hospitals already contributed detailed clinical information on 103 890 myocardial infarction patients (inclusive of 39% ST-segment myocardial infarction and 61% non–ST-segment myocardial infarction patients). Overall data quality has been excellent, with <5% clinical fields missing. Site quality improvement efforts are supported via detailed quarterly feedback reports, routine web educational programs, and sharing of "best practice" clinical support tools.

Conclusions— The AR-G represents a unified, national, acute myocardial infarction registry and supports a robust quality improvement effort designed to encourage evidence-based acute myocardial infarction care and, ultimately, improve patient outcomes.

  R. H Mehta , S Sheng , S. M O'Brien , F. L Grover , J. S Gammie , T. B Ferguson , E. D Peterson and on behalf of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Cardiac Surgery Database Investigators

Background— Reoperation for bleeding represents an important complication in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG). Yet, few studies have characterized risk factors and patient outcomes of this event.

Methods and Results— We evaluated 528 686 CABG patients at >800 hospitals in the Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Cardiac Database (2004 to 2007). Clinical features and in-hospital outcomes were evaluated in patients with and without reoperation for bleeding after CABG. Logistic regression was used to identify predictors of risk of this event and to estimate weights for an additive risk score. A total of 12 652 CABG patients (2.4%) required reoperation for bleeding. These rates remained fairly stable over time (2.2%, 2.3%, 2.5%, and 2.4% from 2004 to 2007, respectively). Although overall operative mortality was 4.5-fold higher in patients requiring reoperation for bleeding versus those who did not (2.0% versus 9.1%), this mortality risk declined significantly over time (11.3%, 9.5%, 8.8%, and 8.2% from 2004 to 2007, respectively, P for trend=0.0006). Factors associated with higher risk for reoperation were identified by multivariable analysis (c statistic=0.60) and summarized into a simple bedside risk score. The risk-score performed well when tested in the validation set (Hosmer-Lemeshow P=0.16).

Conclusions— Reoperation for bleeding remains an important morbid event after CABG. Nonetheless, death in patients with this complication has decreased over time. Our risk tool should allow estimation of patients risk for reoperation for bleeding and promote preventive measures when feasible in this at-risk group.

  E. D Peterson , J. A Spertus , D. J Cohen , M. A Hlatky , A. S Go , B. G Vickrey , J. L Saver and P. C. Hinton

Background— The field of outcomes research seeks to define optimal treatment in practice and to promote the rapid full adoption of efficacious therapies into routine clinical care. The American Heart Association (AHA) formed the AHA Pharmaceutical Roundtable (PRT) Outcomes Research Centers Network to accelerate attainment of these goals. Participating centers were intended to carry out state-of-the-art outcomes research in cardiovascular disease and stroke, to train the next generation of investigators, and to support the formation of a collaborative research network.

Program— After a competitive application process, 4 AHA PRT Outcomes Research Centers were selected: Duke Clinical Research Institute; Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute; Stanford University–Kaiser Permanente of Northern California; and University of California, Los Angeles. Each center proposed between 1 and 3 projects organized around a single theme in cardiovascular disease or stroke. Additionally, each center will select and train up to 6 postdoctoral fellows over the next 4 years, and will participate in cross-collaborative activities among the centers.

Conclusions— The AHA PRT Outcomes Research Centers Network is designed to further strengthen the field of cardiovascular disease and stroke outcomes research by fostering innovative research, supporting high quality training, and encouraging center-to-center collaborations.

  P. N Peterson , J. S Rumsfeld , L Liang , N. M Albert , A. F Hernandez , E. D Peterson , G. C Fonarow , F. A Masoudi and on behalf of the American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines Heart Failure Program

Background— Effective risk stratification can inform clinical decision-making. Our objective was to derive and validate a risk score for in-hospital mortality in patients hospitalized with heart failure using American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines–Heart Failure (GWTG-HF) program data.

Methods and Results— A cohort of 39 783 patients admitted January 1, 2005, to June 26, 2007, to 198 hospitals participating in GWTG-HF was divided into derivation (70%, n=27 850) and validation (30%, n=11 933) samples. Multivariable logistic regression identified predictors of in-hospital mortality in the derivation sample from candidate demographic, medical history, and laboratory variables collected at admission. In-hospital mortality rate was 2.86% (n=1139). Age, systolic blood pressure, blood urea nitrogen, heart rate, sodium, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and nonblack race were predictive of in-hospital mortality. The model had good discrimination in the derivation and validation datasets (c-index, 0.75 in each). Effect estimates from the entire sample were used to generate a mortality risk score. The predicted probability of in-hospital mortality varied more than 24-fold across deciles (range, 0.4% to 9.7%) and corresponded with observed mortality rates. The model had the same operating characteristics among those with preserved and impaired left ventricular systolic function. The morality risk score can be calculated on the Web-based calculator available with the GWTG-HF data entry tool.

Conclusions— The GWTG-HF risk score uses commonly available clinical variables to predict in-hospital mortality and provides clinicians with a validated tool for risk stratification that is applicable to a broad spectrum of patients with heart failure, including those with preserved left ventricular systolic function.

  J. L Petersen , E Yow , W AlJaroudi , L. K Shaw , A Goyal , D. K McGuire , E. D Peterson and R. A. Harrington

Background— Metabolic syndrome (MetSyn) is associated with increased cardiovascular risk in the general population. Its prognostic implications are less well defined in patients with coronary artery disease.

Methods and Results— We analyzed patients in the Duke Database for Cardiovascular Disease with a diagnosis of incident obstructive coronary artery disease. Diabetes mellitus (DM) was classified as a clinical history of DM, use of hypoglycemic drugs, or fasting glucose of ≥126 mg/dL. MetSyn was defined as having 3 of 5 characteristics: fasting glucose ≥100 and <126 mg/dL, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (men, <40 mg/dL; women, <50 mg/dL), triglycerides >150 mg/dL, blood pressure ≥130/85 mm Hg, or use of antihypertensive therapy, or body mass index ≥27. Death, myocardial infarction, or stroke was assessed at 6 months, 1 year, then annually. Cox proportional hazards models were generated to compare mortality and cardiovascular events between groups. The primary cohort consisted of 5744 patients; 1831 (31.9%) had DM, 2491 (43.4%) had MetSyn, and 1422 (24.7%) had no DM/MetSyn. Median follow-up was 5 years. Compared with no DM/MetSyn patients, DM patients had a higher adjusted risk for mortality (hazard ratio, 1.47; 95% CI, 1.28 to 1.69) but MetSyn patients did not (hazard ratio, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.81 to 1.08). Similar results were found for the combined end points of death or myocardial infarction, and death, myocardial infarction, or stroke.

Conclusions— In a population of consecutive patients with a new diagnosis of coronary artery disease by angiography, MetSyn without DM was not an independent predictor of mortality or cardiovascular events.

  S. W Glickman , W Boulding , M Manary , R Staelin , M. T Roe , R. J Wolosin , E. M Ohman , E. D Peterson and K. A. Schulman

Background— Hospitals use patient satisfaction surveys to assess their quality of care. A key question is whether these data provide valid information about the medically related quality of hospital care. The objective of this study was to determine whether patient satisfaction is associated with adherence to practice guidelines and outcomes for acute myocardial infarction and to identify the key drivers of patient satisfaction.

Methods and Results— We examined clinical data on 6467 patients with acute myocardial infarction treated at 25 US hospitals participating in the CRUSADE initiative from 2001 to 2006. Press Ganey patient satisfaction surveys for cardiac admissions were also available from 3562 patients treated at these same 25 centers over this period. Patient satisfaction was positively correlated with 13 of 14 acute myocardial infarction performance measures. After controlling for a hospital’s overall guideline adherence score, higher patient satisfaction scores were associated with lower risk-adjusted inpatient mortality (P=0.025). One-quartile changes in both patient satisfaction and guideline adherence scores produced similar changes in predicted survival. For example, a 1-quartile change (75th to 100th) in either the patient satisfaction score or the guideline adherence score yielded the same change in predicted survival (odds ratio, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.49; and odds ratio, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.08 to 1.41, respectively). Satisfaction with nursing care was the most important determinant of overall patient satisfaction (P<0.001).

Conclusions— Higher patient satisfaction is associated with improved guideline adherence and lower inpatient mortality rates, suggesting that patients are good discriminators of the type of care they receive. Thus, patients’ satisfaction with their care provides important incremental information on the quality of acute myocardial infarction care.

  G. C Fonarow , M. J Reeves , E. E Smith , J. L Saver , X Zhao , D. W Olson , A. F Hernandez , E. D Peterson , L. H Schwamm and on behalf of the GWTG Stroke Steering Committee and Investigators

Background— Stroke results in substantial death and disability. To address this burden, Get With The Guideline (GWTG)-Stroke was developed to facilitate the measurement, tracking, and improvement in quality of care and outcomes for acute stroke and transient ischemic attack (TIA) patients in the United States.

Methods and Results— We analyzed the characteristics, performance measures, and in-hospital outcomes in the first 1 000 000 acute ischemic stroke, intracerebral hemorrhage, subarachnoid hemorrhage, and TIA admissions from 1392 hospitals that participated in the GWTG-Stroke Program 2003 to 2009. Patients were 53.5% women, 73.3% white, and with mean age of 70.1±14.9 years. There were 601 599 (60.2%) ischemic strokes, 108 671 (10.9%) intracerebral hemorrhages, 34 945 (3.5%) subarachnoid hemorrhages, 26 977 (2.7%) strokes not classified, and 227 788 (22.8%) TIAs. Performance measures showed small to moderate differences by cerebrovascular event type. In-hospital mortality rate was highest among intracerebral hemorrhage (25.0%) and subarachnoid hemorrhage (20.4%), and intermediate in ischemic stroke (5.5%) patients and lowest among TIA patients (0.3%). Significant improvements over time from 2003 to 2009 in quality of care were observed: all-or-none measure, 44.0% versus 84.3% (+40.3%, P<0.0001). After adjustment for patient and hospital variables, the cumulative adjusted odds ratio for the all-or-none measure over the 6 years was 9.4 (95% confidence interval, 8.3 to 10.6, P<0.0001). Temporal improvements in length of stay and risk-adjusted in-hospital mortality rate (for ischemic stroke and TIA) were also observed.

Conclusions— With more than 1 million patients enrolled, GWTG-Stroke represents an integrated stroke and TIA registry that supports national surveillance, innovative research, and sustained quality improvement efforts facilitating evidence-based stroke/TIA care.

  P. M Ho , T. T Tsai , T. Y Wang , S. M Shetterly , C. L Clarke , A. S Go , A Sedrakyan , J. S Rumsfeld , E. D Peterson and D. J. Magid

Background— A prior study from the Veterans Health Administration found a clustering of cardiovascular events after clopidogrel cessation. We sought to confirm and expand these findings.

Methods and Results— This was a retrospective cohort study of 2017 patients with acute coronary syndrome discharged on clopidogrel from an integrated health care delivery system. Rates of all-cause mortality or acute myocardial infarction (MI) within 1 year after stopping clopidogrel were assessed among patients who did not have an event before stopping clopidogrel. Death/MI occurred in 4.3% (n=71) of patients. The rates of death/MI were 3.07, 1.62, 0.70, and 0.95 per 10 000 patient-days for the time intervals of 0 to 90, 91 to 180, 181 to 270, and 271 to 360 days after stopping clopidogrel. In multivariable analysis, the 0- to 90-day interval after stopping clopidogrel was associated with higher risk of death/MI (incidence rate ratio, 2.74; 95% confidence interval, 1.69 to 4.44) compared with 91- to 360-day interval. There was a similar trend of increased events after stopping clopidogrel for various subgroups (women versus men, medical therapy versus percutaneous coronary intervention, stent type, and ≥6 months or <6 months of clopidogrel treatment). Among patients taking clopidogrel but stopping ACE inhibitor medications, the event rates were similar in the 0- to 90-day versus the 91- to 360-day interval (2.67 versus 2.91 per 10 000 patient-days; P=0.91).

Conclusions— We observed a clustering of adverse events in the 0 to 90 days after stopping clopidogrel. This clustering of events was not present among patients stopping ACE inhibitors. These findings are consistent with a possible rebound platelet hyper-reactivity after stopping clopidogrel and additional platelet studies are needed to confirm this effect.

  P. N Peterson , J. S Rumsfeld , L Liang , A. F Hernandez , E. D Peterson , G. C Fonarow , F. A Masoudi and on behalf of the American Heart Association Get With The Guidelines Heart Failure Program

Background— Although the absolute benefits of an intervention are proportional to patients’ underlying risk, studies in heart failure have noted a paradoxical inverse relationship between treatment and risk. The extent to which this reflects higher rates of contraindications in patients with higher risk or larger gaps in care quality has not been explored.

Methods and Results— We studied 18 307 patients with left ventricular systolic dysfunction surviving hospitalization between January 2005 and June 2007 from 194 hospitals participating in Get With The Guidelines (GWTG)–Heart Failure. Patients were categorized according to their estimated risk for in-hospital mortality using a validated risk score. The proportions of patients with documented contraindications to angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers and β-blockers as well as the use of these medications among patients without contraindications at hospital discharge was determined across levels of risk. For each therapy, the proportion of patients with contraindications was significantly higher with increasing patient risk (P<0.001 for each). Even after excluding those with contraindications, the use of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors/angiotensin receptor blockers and β-blockers was significantly lower with increasing risk (P<0.001 for each).

Conclusions— The use of evidence-based therapies is lower in patients with heart failure at higher risk of mortality both because of higher rates of contraindications to therapy and lower rates of use among eligible patients. Optimizing heart failure outcomes will require both the expansion of the evidence base for treating the highest-risk patients as well as the development of effective strategies to assure that eligible high-risk patients receive all appropriate therapies.

  A. F Hernandez , G. C Fonarow , B. G Hammill , S. M Al Khatib , C. W Yancy , C. M O'Connor , K. A Schulman , E. D Peterson and L. H. Curtis

Background— The clinical effectiveness of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) in older patients with heart failure has not been established, and older patients have been underrepresented in previous studies.

Methods and Results— We identified patients with heart failure who were aged 65 years or older and were eligible for an ICD, had left ventricular ejection fraction of 35% or less, and were discharged alive from hospitals participating in the Organized Program to Initiate Lifesaving Treatment in Hospitalized Patients With Heart Failure and the Get With the Guidelines–Heart Failure quality-improvement programs during the period January 1, 2003, through December 31, 2006. We matched the patients to Medicare claims to examine long-term outcomes. The main outcome measure was all-cause mortality over 3 years. The study population included 4685 patients who were discharged alive and were eligible for an ICD. Mean age was 75.2 years, 60% of the patients were women, mean ejection fraction was 25%, and 376 (8.0%) patients received an ICD before discharge. Mortality was significantly lower among patients who received an ICD compared with those who did not (19.8% versus 27.6% at 1 year, 30.9% versus 41.9% at 2 years, and 38.1% versus 52.3% at 3 years; P<0.001 for all comparisons). The inverse probability-weighted adjusted hazard of mortality at 3 years for patients receiving an ICD was 0.71 (95% CI, 0.56 to 0.91).

Conclusions— Medicare beneficiaries hospitalized with heart failure and left ventricular ejection fraction of 35% or less who were selected for ICD therapy had lower risk-adjusted long-term mortality compared with those who did not receive an ICD.

Clinical Trial Registration— Identifier: NCT00344513.

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