Frailty Assessment in Heart Failure: an Overview of the Multi-domain Approach

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Journal Article
Current Heart Failure Reports, 2018, 15 (1), pp. 17 - 23
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© 2018, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature. Purpose of Review: The study aims (1) to provide a contemporary description of frailty assessment in heart failure and (2) to provide an overview of multi-domain frailty assessment in heart failure. Recent Findings: Frailty assessment is an important predictive measure for mortality and hospitalisation in individuals with heart failure. To date, there are no frailty assessment instruments validated for use in heart failure. This has resulted in significant heterogeneity between studies regarding the assessment of frailty. The most common frailty assessment instrument used in heart failure is the Frailty Phenotype which focuses on five physical domains of frailty; the appropriateness a purely physical measure of frailty in individuals with heart failure who frequently experience decreased exercise tolerance and shortness of breath is yet to be determined. A limited number of studies have approached frailty assessment using a multi-domain view which may be more clinically relevant in heart failure. Summary: There remains a lack of consensus regarding frailty assessment and an absence of a validated instrument in heart failure. Despite this, frailty continues to be assessed frequently, primarily for research purposes, using predominantly physical frailty measures. A more multidimensional view of frailty assessment using a multi-domain approach will likely be more sensitive to identifying at risk patients.
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