Although many general practices have facilities for electrocardiography, the prognostic importance of common abnormalities is underappreciated.
In earlier studies of the prognostic importance of ECG changes, sample sizes were small and the results were equivocal.
Finally, for failure to have some prognostic importance it should correlate with fatality, and we have shown that in these studies a correlation did not exist.
We found missed myocardial damage of prognostic importance in 6% of patients sent home from the emergency department.
However, only one prognostic study of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality comparing home and office blood pressure measurements measurements has been conducted.
Patients suffering from such poor prognostic criteria often times will benefit from lung transplantation.
It is probable that studies showing a strong (often statistically significant) prognostic ability are more likely to be published.
At the initial assessment it is important to define factors that have prognostic importance.
Measurement of these variables can be obtained in most practices quickly and can provide the practicing clinician with powerful prognostic information.
Evaluation of changes in clinical and physiological variables over 6 and 12 months may provide clinicians with more accurate prognostic information than baseline values alone.