Depression and Clinical Outcomes in Heart Failure: An OPTIMIZE-HF Analysis

Nancy M. Albert*, Gregg C. Fonarow, William T. Abraham, Mihai Gheorghiade, Barry H. Greenberg, Eduardo Nunez, Christopher M. O'Connor, Wendy G. Stough, Clyde W. Yancy, James B. Young

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


Background: Depression is a risk factor of excessive morbidity and mortality in heart failure. We examined in-hospital treatment and postdischarge outcomes in hospitalized heart failure patients with a documented history of depression from the Organized Program to Initiate Lifesaving Treatment in Hospitalized Patients with Heart Failure. Methods: We identified patient factors associated with depression history and evaluated the association of depression with hospital treatments and mortality, and early postdischarge mortality, emergency care, and rehospitalization. Results: In 48,612 patients from 259 hospitals, depression history was present in 10.6% and occurred more often in females, whites, and those with common heart failure comorbidities, including chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (36% vs 27%), anemia (27% vs 16.5%), insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (20% vs 16%), and hyperlipidemia (38% vs 31%), all P <.001. Patients with depression history were less likely to receive coronary interventions and cardiac devices, all P <.01; or be referred to outpatient disease management programs, P <.001. Length of hospital stay was longer with depression history (7.0 vs 6.4 days, P <.001). In 5791 patients followed-up at 60-90 days postdischarge, those with depression history had higher mortality (8.8% vs 6.4%; P = .025). After multivariable modeling, depression history remained a predictor of length of hospital stay, P <.001 and postdischarge mortality, P = .02. Conclusions: Depression history at heart failure hospitalization may be a predictor of prolonged length of hospital stay, less use of cardiac procedures and postdischarge disease management, and increased 60-90 day mortality. Patients with depression might represent a vulnerable group in which improved use of evidence-based treatment should be considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)366-373
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2009


  • Early clinical outcomes
  • Length of stay
  • Mortality
  • Rehospitalization
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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