What are the main symptoms and concerns reported by patients with advanced chronic heart failure?—a secondary analysis of the Palliative care Outcome Scale (POS) and Integrated Palliative care Outcome Scale (IPOS)
There is a lack of valid disease-specific patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) for detecting symptoms and concerns in patients with advanced chronic heart failure (CHF). The Palliative care Outcome Scale (POS) and Integrated Palliative care Outcome Scale (IPOS) are specifically developed to capture the main symptoms and concerns of people severely affected by advanced disease. The aim of this study was to determine whether POS and IPOS captures the main symptoms and concerns self-reported by patients with advanced CHF. A secondary analysis of existing POS/IPOS data collected in three longitudinal studies was conducted. POS and IPOS start with an open-ended question for patients to report their main problems and concerns, followed by subsequent closed questions on a range of symptoms and other concerns. Descriptive statistics were used to report the results. The 102 participants from the three datasets had median age 81 years (SD ±9.84 years); 62% male; 87% white. A total of 107 concerns were reported in the first, open POS/IPOS question seeking the patient’s main concerns. Of these, 83 (77%) were reflected in the subsequent IPOS/POS closed questions. The high correspondence between the free-text responses and the closed questions indicates that most issues are captured by the POS/IPOS items. In conclusion, the generic versions of POS and IPOS do capture the main problems and concerns of patients with advanced CHF. Minor adaptations and further psychometric validation of POS and IPOS are needed in this population.