Objective: To report reference data for the heart-specific MacNew Heart Disease Health-Related Quality of Life instrument.
Methods: One thousand five hundred and six patients with myocardial infarction (n = 346), heart failure (n = 201), and ischaemic heart disease (IHD, n = 959) were surveyed 4 months after hospital discharge. Quality of life scores were determined, stratified by diagnostic category, age and sex. Changes in scores from 4 to 8 months post-discharge were calculated for a subset of 830 patients, stratified by age and sex.
Results: At 4 months there were no significant differences in scores between myocardial infarction and electively admitted IHD patients, however the scores of heart failure patients were significantly lower (indicating poorer quality of life) than those of patients with other diagnoses. There were few significant differences between age groups or sexes when comparing within diagnostic groups. Change from 4 to 8 months was not associated with diagnosis, age, or sex but was associated with events within the period (readmission or revascularisation). The change data suggest that a value of 0.5 may be a useful indicator of the minimal clinically important difference.
Conclusions: These reference data will assist in sample size calculations and with comparison of results in other studies, and will be of use to researchers who are using or intending to use the MacNew instrument.