Few studies have examined psychosocial risk factors
for cardiovascular disease
(CVD) between diagnostic groups of CVD patients. We compared levels of depression, anxiety, hostility, exhaustion, positive affect, and social support, and the prevalence of type D personality between patient groups with a primary diagnosis of coronary heart disease (CHD), chronic heart failure (CHF), or peripheral arterial disease (PAD).
We examined 548 CHD patients, 105 CHF patients, and 79 PAD patients who completed the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, the cynical hostility subscale of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory–2, the short form of the Maastricht Vital Exhaustion Questionnaire, the type D personality questionnaire, the positive mood scale of the Global Mood Scale, and the Enhancing Recovery in CHD Social Support Inventory, all in the first week of cardiac rehabilitation. Group differences in psychosocial factors were adjusted for sociodemographic factors, previous myocardial infarction, traditional cardiovascular risk factors
, and medications.
Relative to patients with PAD, those with CHD and those with CHF both showed greater exhaustion (P
≤ .001) and lower positive affect (P
≤ .03). The effect sizes of these differences were clinically relevant (Cohen's d
between 0.32 and 0.49). There were no significant differences in psychosocial risk factors
between CHD and CHF patients.
The profile of psychosocial risk factors
for CVD revealed clinically relevant variability between different diagnostic groups of CVD patients. The findings imply that patients with distinct cardiac diagnosis might additionally benefit from comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation if the program includes psychosocial risk factor–specific interventions.