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01-02-2009 | Uitgave 1/2009

Quality of Life Research 1/2009

Disease-specific health-related quality of life questionnaires for heart failure: a systematic review with meta-analyses

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 1/2009
Olatz Garin, Montse Ferrer, Àngels Pont, Montserrat Rué, Anna Kotzeva, Ingela Wiklund, Eric Van Ganse, Jordi Alonso
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1007/​s11136-008-9416-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



Heart failure (HF) is an increasingly common condition affecting patients’ health-related quality of life (HRQL). However, there is little literature comparing HF-specific instruments. Our aim was to evaluate and compare data on the conceptual model and metric properties (reliability, validity and responsiveness) of HF-specific HRQL instruments, by performing a systematic review with meta-analyses.

Methods and results

Of 2,541 articles initially identified, 421 were full-text reviewed. Ninety-four reported data on five questionnaires: Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire (MLHFQ), Chronic Heart Failure Questionnaire (CHFQ), Quality of Life Questionnaire for Severe Heart Failure (QLQ-SHF), Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire (KCCQ) and Left Ventricular Dysfunction (LVD-36) questionnaire. Metric properties (reliability, validity and responsiveness) were summarised using meta-analysis for pools above five estimates. Cronbach’s alpha coefficients were generally high (0.83–0.95) for overall scores and scales measuring physical health. Associations with four validity criteria (New York Heart Association [NYHA] class, six-minute walk test [6MWT] and short form-36 [SF-36] ‘Physical’ and ‘Social Functioning’) were moderate to strong (0.41–0.84), except for those between two CHFQ domains (fatigue and dyspnoea) and the NYHA (0.19 and 0.22). Pooled estimates of change from eight meta-analyses showed the MLHFQ to be highly responsive, with changes in overall score ranging from −9.6 (95% confidence interval [CI]: −4.1; −15.2) for placebo to −17.7 (95% CI: −15.3; −20.2) for pacing devices. The CHFQ and KCCQ also showed good sensitivity to change.


Most of the questionnaires studied met minimum psychometric criteria, though current evidence would primarily support the use of the MLHFQ, followed by the KCCQ and CHFQ.

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