A study just released in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology looked at the connection between pre-operation anxiety levels in patients and how well those patients improved during the first year after the surgery.
The study by a group of cardiologists looked at the anxiety levels of patients just before they were to undergo heart surgery. They then tracked those patients for the first year of their recovery after the surgery to see if there was any impact of the anxiety levels on their quality of life during recovery. The study followed 720 patients who were operated on and measured their levels of anxiety just before the operation. They found that almost half (347 or 48%) of the patients had what could be described as high levels of anxiety just before the operation.
The researchers found that both the high and low anxiety groups had similar operation success rates, however the recovery of the high anxiety group was much slower and their quality of life had significantly poorer improvement outcomes.
This level of evidence should be a call to health providers and patients to ensure the patients are equipped to lower their levels of anxiety before surgery. occurs.
Mohanty, S. et al (2014) Baseline anxiety impacts improvement in quality of life in atrial fibrillation undergoing catheter albtion. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2014;63(12_S):. doi:10.1016/S0735-1097(14)60395-8