Does Clinician's Knowledge of B-Type Natriuretic Peptide Levels Translate to Improvement of Quality of Life and Less Hospitalization Days in Patients with Heart Failure?


Address for correspondence:
Irma B. Ancheta, PhD, RN, University of North Florida, 1 UNF Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32224


This pilot study was conducted to determine whether clinicians' knowledge of b-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels in individuals with heart failure (HF) correlates with better outcomes including quality of life (QOL) and hospital length of stay (LOS) over a 90-day period. HF clinic patients were randomized into 2 groups: clinician aware (BNP group; n=50) or blinded to BNP levels (control group; n=42). BNP levels were measured at baseline using the BNP Immunoassay Kit. QOL was measured by the Minnesota Living with Heart Failure (MLWHF) questionnaire, and hospital LOS were measured at baseline and 90 days. There was no significant difference in BNP levels between groups. Compared with baseline scores (46.87 ± 29.63), mean QOL scores at 90 days (37.46 ± 28.67) were not significantly different for both groups. Hospital LOS was also similar for both groups (mean=3 days). BNP levels were significantly correlated with New York Heart Association classification (P=.05), ejection fraction (P=0.0001), creatinine levels (P=0.05), and overall Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire scores (P=.01). Clinician's knowledge of BNP levels is not associated with better outcomes of QOL or hospital LOS in HF patients. However, BNP levels are correlated with functional status and physiological parameters. Further research is needed to determine whether other factors influence QOL and hospital LOS of HF patients.