Abstract. Grool AM, van der Graaf Y, Visseren FLJ, de Borst GJ, Algra A, Geerlings MI, on behalf of the SMART Study Group (University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands). Self-rated health status as a risk factor for future vascular events and mortality in patients with symptomatic and asymptomatic atherosclerotic disease: the SMART study. J Intern Med 2012; 272: 277–286.
Objectives. Lower self-rated health status has been associated with worse prognosis in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD). We investigated the influence of self-rated physical and mental health status on the risk of future vascular events and mortality for various locations of symptomatic atherosclerotic disease and asymptomatic disease.
Design. Patients with CAD (n = 2547), cerebrovascular disease (n = 1061), peripheral arterial disease (PAD; n = 648), abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA; n = 272) and asymptomatic atherosclerotic disease (n = 1933) were followed for a median of 4 years for the occurrence of a new vascular event or death. Self-rated health status was assessed with the Short Form-36 physical and mental component summary scales. Cox regression models were used to estimate associations between health status and vascular events and death, adjusted for age, sex, vascular risk factors and intima–media thickness.
Results. In the total population, lower self-rated physical health status (per 10-point decrease) increased the risk of vascular events [hazard ratio (HR) = 1.37, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.24–1.52], and all-cause (HR = 1.45, 95% CI 1.29–1.63) and vascular mortality (HR = 1.40, 95% CI 1.20–1.64). A 10-point decrease in mental health status was associated with a modest increase in the risk of vascular events (HR = 1.19, 95% CI 1.08–1.32), and all-cause (HR = 1.19, 95% CI 1.05–1.34) and vascular mortality (HR = 1.28, 95% CI 1.09–1.49). Risk estimates of physical and mental health status were highest in patients with asymptomatic atherosclerotic disease and lowest in those with PAD.
Conclusions. Poorer self-rated physical and mental health status increases the risk of vascular events and mortality in a broad population of patients with symptomatic and asymptomatic atherosclerotic disease.