175356 Use of alternative and complementary medicine in cardiac patients

Monday, October 27, 2008

Hoa Bui Appel, PhD, MPH , School of Social Work, Marysville, WA
Amy Ai, PhD , School of Social Work, University of Pittsburg, Pittsburg, PA
The use of alternative and complementary medicine (CAM) has grown dramatically in recent years. Little research has focused on the use of CAM in patients with heart diseases, one of the major consumer groups of health care services. The present study investigates the prevalence, pattern, perceived benefits and predictors of the use of CAM in middle-aged and older patients prior to cardiac surgery. We conducted interviews on 426 participants twice prior to cardiac surgery: One face-to-face interview two weeks preoperatively, and the second was a telephone interview two days before operation. Logistic regression models were conducted to identify users of CAM therapies. Results revealed that 80% of patients confirmed at least one CAM usage. This included, but not limited to, chiropractic, relaxation techniques, lifestyle-diet modification, spiritual healing, megavitamin therapy, massage, and herbs or folk remedies. Greater CAM utility was found in participants with more education, greater functional status, public religiosity and prior congestive heart failure. In addition, results also indicate less CAM use among those with cerebrovascular diseases and arrhythmia. Our findings suggest significant CAM use in our cardiac sample. Therefore, in accordance with increased popular interest in CAM usage and research, this research helps inform future clinical, research, and policy decisions in CAM, especially for cardiac patients. Health care providers are encouraged to learn about CAM and its possible benefits to their patients, as well as about collaborative efforts necessary to enhance comprehensive medical care.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify three types of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). 2. List four reasons why patients use CAM. 3. Name three ehtical issues concerning research in CAM.

Keywords: Alternative Medicine/Therapies, Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have worked extensively with the primary author of this research.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.