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Patient satisfaction with care has received little attention within the field of congenital heart disease. Our objective was to examine patient satisfaction with the care received when undergoing open-heart surgery in order to identify the best and worst aspects of peri-operative care. Moreover, we examined whether having contact with a specialised nurse in addition to usual care is associated with higher patient satisfaction levels.
Patient satisfaction was measured by the Satisfaction with Hospital Care Questionnaire, evaluating nine aspects of care by answering individual items and giving overall grades. A top 10 of the best and worst items was selected. Linear regression analyses were used to examine the relationship between having contact with a specialised nurse and patient satisfaction (9 grades), independent of patient characteristics – sex, age, educational level, and health status.
Data were available for 75 patients. Grades ranged from 6.74 for “discharge and after care” to 8.18 for “medical care”. In all, 21% of patients were dissatisfied with the clarity of the information about lifestyle adjustments given by the surgeon. However, patients who had contact with a specialised nurse were more satisfied with the provided information (B-coefficient is 0.497, p-value is 0.038), independent of patient characteristics.
Patients were satisfied with the received care, although there is room for improvement, especially in discharge and after care and the clarity of the information provided by the surgeon. This gap in care can be compensated for by specialised nurses, as patients who were counselled by a specialised nurse were more satisfied with the provided information.
In shock, organ perfusion is of vital importance because organ oxygenation is at risk. NO, the main endothelial-derived vasodilator, is crucial for organ perfusion and coronary patency. The availability of NO might depend on the balance between a substrate (arginine) and an inhibitor (asymmetric dimethylarginine; ADMA) of NO synthase. Therefore, we investigated the relationship of arginine, ADMA and their ratio with circulatory markers, disease severity, organ failure and mortality in shock patients. In forty-four patients with shock (cardiogenic n 17, septic n 27), we prospectively measured plasma arginine and ADMA at intensive care unit admission, Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE) II-(predicted mortality) and Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) score, and circulatory markers to investigate their relationship. Arginine concentration was decreased (34·6 (sd 17·9) μmol/l) while ADMA concentration was within the normal range (0·46 (sd 0·18) μmol/l), resulting in a decrease in the arginine:ADMA ratio. The ratio correlated with several circulatory markers (cardiac index, disseminated intravascular coagulation, bicarbonate, lactate and pH), APACHE II and SOFA score, creatine kinase and glucose. The arginine:ADMA ratio showed an association (OR 0·976, 95 % CI 0·963, 0·997, P = 0·025) and a diagnostic accuracy (area under the curve 0·721, 95 % CI 0·560, 0·882, P = 0·016) for hospital mortality, whereas the arginine or ADMA concentration alone or APACHE II-predicted mortality failed to do so. In conclusion, in shock patients, the imbalance of arginine and ADMA is related to circulatory failure, organ failure and disease severity, and predicts mortality. We propose a pathophysiological mechanism in shock: the imbalance of arginine and ADMA contributes to endothelial and cardiac dysfunction resulting in poor organ perfusion and organ failure, thereby increasing the risk of death.
For risk assessment and control of the failing Björk-Shiley convexo-concave heart valve, we present a life cycle-based complex system model and a risk intensity assessment model, allowing consistent analysis of this complex medical problem and identification of all pertinent aspects of product-related risks to patients.
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