Predictive Value of the Get With The Guidelines Heart Failure Risk Score in Unselected Cardiac Intensive Care Unit Patients

Melissa Lyle, Siu Hin Wan, Dennis Murphree, Courtney Bennett, Brandon M. Wiley, Gregory Barsness, Margaret Redfield, Jacob Jentzer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: The cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) population is no longer composed of only patients with acute coronary syndromes, and includes those with acute heart failure and multiple comorbidities. We hypothesized that the GWTG-HF (Get With The Guidelines–Heart Failure) risk score that predicts inpatient mortality in hospitalized patients with heart failure would predict mortality in CICU patients. Methods and Results: We retrospectively analyzed CICU patients at a tertiary care hospital from 2007 to 2015. The GWTG-HF risk score was calculated at CICU admission. As a secondary analysis, the EFFECT (Enhanced Feedback for Effective Cardiac Treatment), OPTIMIZE-HF (Organized Program to Initiate Lifesaving Treatment in Hospitalized Patients With Heart Failure), and ADHERE (Acute Decompensated Heart Failure National Registry) risk scores were calculated. Kaplan–Meier survival analysis and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve value were determined for inpatient and 1-year mortality. The GWTG-HF risk score was calculated in 9532 (95%) patients, with a median value of 40 (interquartile range, 35–47). Inpatient mortality occurred in 824 (8.6%) patients, and 2075 (21.8%) patients died by 1 year. Patients who died in hospital had a significantly higher mean GWTG-HF score (47.7 versus 40.2; P<0.001). Inpatient and 1-year mortality increased in each GWTG-HF risk score quartile (P<0.0001). Discrimination of the GWTG-HF, EFFECT, OPTIMIZE-HF, and ADHERE risk scores was assessed using area under the receiver operating characteristic curve values for hospital mortality, and were similar for all risk scores (0.72–0.74; P>0.05). The Hosmer–Lemeshow statistic suggested poor calibration for hospital mortality by the GWTG-HF risk score (P<0.001). Conclusions: The GWTG-HF risk score and other heart failure prediction tools demonstrate good discrimination for inpatient and 1-year mortality in a heterogeneous cohort of CICU patients. Our study emphasizes that prognostic variables overlap in cardiac patients, regardless of the admission diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere012439
JournalJournal of the American Heart Association
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 4 2020


  • cardiac intensive care unit
  • coronary care unit
  • heart failure
  • mortality
  • risk score

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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