26 Feb Heart Failure: Marriage Has a Beneficial Effect For One Gender
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Katarina Leyba, MBA, MD
University of Colorado School of Medicine
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: This study looked at the relationship between relationship status and outcomes in patients with heart failure.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response: The primary finding is that lifetime marital history appears to be an important predictor of survival in men with heart failure but not women. Specifically lifelong bachelors had significantly worse long-term survival than men who had ever been married, (i.e. married, separated, divorced or widowed). In contrast, women with HF who had never been married did not appear to be at higher risk of death than those who had.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Non-medical factors such as relationship history can have a significant impact on the course of heart failure. Furthermore, these factors may not carry the same importance for all groups; in this case relationship history appears to be much more important in men than women. The lack of difference in survival between women with different marital histories could indicate that either the same factors are not as clinically beneficial in women or possibly that there are fewer deficits in those traits that are impacted through marriage.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a results of this study?
Response: These findings suggest that marriage has some kind of beneficial effect(s) for men that helps them survive longer after developing heart failure. At present, we have not identified precisely what these effects are, but they could include health-seeking behaviors, socioeconomic and family support in older age, or differences in factors like frailty, and nutrition, and mood. Future research into the factors driving the protective effect of marriage on men with heart failure is needed to identify new interpersonal strategies that could help improve the ability of patients to cope with heart failure.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add? Any disclosures?
Response: Treating heart failure may not be as simple as a prescription. Understanding the impact of social factors like marital status is critical to identifying new strategies and personalized approaches to improve outcomes for patients with heart failure.
LIFELONG BACHELOR STATUS IS ASSOCIATED WITH INCREASED MORTALITY IN MEN WITH HEART FAILURE—A SECONDARY ANALYSIS OF THE MULTI-ETHNIC STUDY OF ATHEROSCLEROSIS
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