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Impact of psychological factors on objective ambulatory measures in patients with intermittent claudication

Journal of Vascular Surgery
DOI: 10.1016/j.jvs.2014.03.281
  • Medicine


Objective The purpose of this study was to evaluate the difference in objective measures of ambulation and psychosocial factors in patients with intermittent claudication (IC) stratified by type D personality, which incorporates elements of social inhibition and negative affectivity. Methods During a 1-year period, routine history and physical examination, ankle-brachial index, and pulse volume recording were performed on IC patients. Questionnaires assessing type D personality and psychosocial factors were also collected. The 6-minute walk test (6MWT) was performed, assessing symptoms and distance walked. Univariate and multivariate methods were used to assess the association between ambulation and type D personality. Results Seventy-one patients were enrolled (mean age, 62.5 ± 1.1 years; mean ankle-brachial index, 0.55 ± 0.03). Mean distance to symptoms and total distance walked were 83.7 ± 80.1 m and 206.5 ± 126.3 m, respectively. Type D personality was present in 29.6% of the population (n = 21). On 6MWT, 83.1% of all patients developed symptoms, and 57.4% quit because of symptoms. Univariate analysis of objective measures of ambulation demonstrated lower distance to symptoms in the type D group and trends toward lower total distance walked and quitting the 6MWT. Multivariate models showed increased odds of quitting the 6MWT (odds ratio, 7.71; P = .01) and less total distance walked by an average of 33.2 ± 13.3 m (P = .02) for the type D group. Conclusions Despite equivalent demographic, medical, and psychosocial factors, the type D group was limited in ambulation, suggesting that type D personality is a strong predictor of disease impact in patients with IC.

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