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A randomised controlled trial to measure the effect of chest pain unit care upon anxiety, depression, and health-related quality of life [ISRCTN85078221]

Goodacre, S. and Nicholl, J. (2004) A randomised controlled trial to measure the effect of chest pain unit care upon anxiety, depression, and health-related quality of life [ISRCTN85078221]. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 2 (39). ISSN 1477-7525


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The chest pain unit (CPU) has been developed to provide a rapid and accurate diagnostic assessment for patients attending hospital with acute, undifferentiated chest pain. We aimed to measure the effect of CPU assessment upon psychological symptoms and health-related quality of life.


We undertook a single-centre, cluster-randomised controlled trial. Days (N = 442) were randomised in equal numbers to CPU or routine care. Patients with acute chest pain, undiagnosed by clinical assessment, ECG and chest radiograph, were recruited and followed up with self-completed questionnaires (SF-36 and HADS) at two days and one month after hospital attendance.


Patients receiving CPU assessment had significantly higher scores on the physical functioning (difference 5.1 points; 95% CI 1.1 to 9.0), vitality (4.6; 1.3 to 8.0), and general health (5.7; 2.3 to 9.2) dimensions of the SF-36 at two days, and significantly higher scores on all except the emotional role dimension at one month. They also had significantly lower depression scores on the HADS depression scale at two days (0.93; 0.34 to 1.51) and one month (1.0; 0.36 to 1.66). However, initially lower anxiety scores at two days (0.89; 0.21 to 1.56) were not maintained at one month (0.48; -0.26 to 1.23). CPU assessment was associated with reduced prevalence (OR 0.71; 95% CI 0.52 to 0.97) and severity (6.5 mm on 100 m visual analogue scale; 95% CI 2.2 to 10.8) of chest pain at one month, but no significant difference in the proportion of patients taking time off work (OR 0.82; 95% CI 0.54 to 1.04).


CPU assessment is associated with improvements in nearly all dimensions of quality of life and with reduced symptoms of depression.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2004 Goodacre and Nicholl; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health (Sheffield) > School of Health and Related Research (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Repository Officer
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2014 18:44
Published Version: http://www.hqlo.com/content/2/1/39
Status: Published
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1186/1477-7525-2-39
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1098

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