Limitations, Depressive Symptoms, and Quality of Life among a Population-Based Sample of Young Adults with Congenital Heart Defects
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Limitations, Depressive Symptoms, and Quality of Life among a Population-Based Sample of Young Adults with Congenital Heart Defects

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  • Alternative Title:
    Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol
  • Description:

    Little population-based data exist on limitations and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in adults with congenital heart defects (CHD).


    We used 2004 to 2012 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey data to identify a population-based sample of young adults ages 18 to 40 years reporting health symptoms or healthcare encounters in the previous year. Comparing adults reporting CHD to others, we examined the prevalence of cognitive, physical, and activity limitations, depressive symptoms, and physical and mental HRQoL. We used chi square tests to examine differences in demographic characteristics, logistic regression to generate adjusted prevalence ratios (aPR), and linear regression to examine HRQoL. Multivariable associations were adjusted for sex, age, race/ethnicity, and smoking status. All analyses were conducted in SUDAAN using weights to account for clustering within sampling units and nonresponse.


    Fifty-nine adults reported CHD (weighted prevalence=0.1%; representing 700,000 U.S. adults from 2004 to 2012 or, on average, 80,000 per year) and 54,011 did not. No demographic characteristics differed significantly by CHD status except health insurance; 31.5% of adults with CHD, compared with 11.0% without, reported public insurance (p=0.01). Compared with their counterparts, adults reporting CHD had a higher prevalence of cognitive (aPR=2.7, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.0, 7.2), physical (aPR=4.0, 95% CI: 1.9, 8.2), and activity limitations (aPR=4.8, 95% CI: 2.6, 9.1), and poorer physical HRQoL (p=0.004). No differences were observed in depressive symptoms and mental HRQoL by CHD status.


    Physical health and cognitive abilities of adults with CHD were compromised compared with adults without CHD.

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