The prognostic impact of improvement in health-related quality of life (QoL) and its relation to response in cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) recipients remains unknown.Aim:
To assess the correspondence between response to CRT and improvements in QoL and to verify if a change in QoL after pacing influences outcome in CRT patients.Methods:
Ninety-seven participants of the Triple-Site Versus Standard Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Trial (TRUST CRT) randomized trial, in New York Heart Association class III-IV, QRS width ≥ 120 ms, left ventricular ejection fraction ≤35%, and significant mechanical dyssynchrony were included. Subjects filled out the Minnesota-QoL questionnaire prior to and 6 months after CRT with defibrillator (CRT-D) implantation. Data on major adverse cardiac events (MACEs: death, heart failure hospitalization, heart transplant) collected within the next 2.5 years and adjudicated blindly constituted the censoring variables.Results:
Within the first 6 months of resynchronization QoL improved in 81%, while worsening in 19% of patients. Clinical response, but not the echocardiographic one, was associated with improved QoL. During subsequent 2.5 years MACEs occurred in 37% of patients (23% died). Subjects without QoL improvement were significantly (both P < 0.05) more prone to experience MACE (61% vs 32%) and die (44% vs 18%) within the follow-up. Unimproved QoL increased the probability of future MACE by 2.7 times (95% confidence intervals [CI]: 1.26–5.83; P = 0.01) and death by 3.2 times (95% CI: 1.23–8.32; P = 0.02) independently from clinical and echocardiographic response.Conclusions:
Clinical response, but not the echocardiographic one, was associated with improved QoL in CRT recipients. These preliminary data suggest that lack of improvement in QoL after CRT was associated with a strongly unfavorable prognosis, regardless of functional or echocardiographic response. Our results merit further studies with a larger number of patients.