New Test Can Predict Heart Fatalities
A new way of evaluating heart-failure patients in the emergency room could mean the difference between life and death, according to new research.
The “risk score” developed by a team of experts at The Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences in Toronto was able to distinguish the likelihood of a particular patient dying within seven days of coming into an E.R.
The method, called the Emergency Heart Failure Mortality Risk Grade (EHMRG), will help physicians decide whether a patient needs hospitalization or can be sent home. Researchers drew up the test after examining the cases of patients who died within a week of coming into the emergency room with heart failure.
The authors cautioned that the EMHRG isn’t the only tool physicians should use; they should also take into account their own judgment as well as other factors including the “ability of the patient to seek follow-up care” as well as his or her “social circumstances.”
The team published the results of the study in the “Annals of Internal Medicine.”