Role of HEART score in evaluating clinical outcomes among emergency department patients with different ethnicities

J Int Med Res. 2021 Apr;49(4):3000605211010638. doi: 10.1177/03000605211010638.


Objective: We aimed to examine the role of the HEART (history, EKG, age, risk factors, and troponin) score in the evaluation of six clinical outcomes among three groups of patients in the emergency department (ED).

Methods: We performed a retrospective observational study among three ED patient groups including White, Black, and Hispanic patients. ED providers used the HEART score to assess the need for patient hospital admission and for emergent cardiac imaging tests (CITs). HEART scores were measured using classification accuracy rates. Performance accuracies were measured in terms of HEART score in relation to four clinical outcomes (positive findings of CITs, ED returns, hospital readmissions, and 30-day major adverse cardiac events [MACE]).

Results: A high classification accuracy rate (87%) was found for use of the HEART score to determine hospital admission. HEART scores showed moderate accuracy (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve 0.66-0.78) in predicting results of emergent CITs, 30-day hospital readmissions, and 30-day MACE outcomes.

Conclusions: Providers adhered to use of the HEART score to determine hospital admission. The HEART score may be associated with emergent CIT findings, 30-day hospital readmissions, and 30-day MACE outcomes, with no differences among White, Black, and Hispanic patient populations.

Keywords: HEART score; cardiac imaging test; clinical outcome; emergency department; ethnicity; hospital admission; patient population.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Chest Pain*
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Humans
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors