Table 1

Study characteristics. Characteristics of the studies included in the systematic review of self-management interventions



Study Population Total (Control/Intervention)

Follow-up & Assessment method


Cline et al. (Sweden)

Education on heart failure for patients and their families. Guidelines for self-management of diuretics based on signs and symptoms and instructions on when to contact the nurse. Provision of 7-day medication organizer. Nurse counselling: 2 × 30 min during hospitalization, 1 × 1 hr after discharge

N = 190 (110/80)

Male: 53%

Mean age: 75.6 Age range: 65–84

Mean NYHA: 2.6

1 year; Self-administered questionnaires, hospital records

Readmission, hospitalization days, health care costs during one year, quality of life, mortality

Jaarsma et al. (Netherlands)

Education about consequences of heart failure and guidelines for compliance, fluid balance, recognition of warning symptoms. Counselling: Average of 4 sessions during hospitalization, 1 phone call & 1 home visit after discharge NOTE: control group received education about medication and lifestyle

N = 179 (95/84)

Male: 58%

Mean age: 73.


NYHA III-IV: 21%, NYHA IV: 61%.

1, 3, 9 months; Patient interviews, questionnaires

Self-care abilities, self-care behaviour, quality of life, overall wellbeing, readmission, hospitalization days, resource utilization.

Koelling et al. (U.S.)

Education (1 hour), provision of instructions for taking medications, weighing, dietary restrictions & symptom monitoring, including when to contact physicians

N = 223 (116/107)

Male: 58%

Mean age 65: Black: 22%

Coronary disease 64%

6 months; Phone call from nurse at 1, 3 and 6 months

Readmission (heart failure, cardiac and all-cause), mortality, cost of care, self-practice scores.

Krumholz et al. (U.S.)

Education about illness, medication, early signs & symptoms, health behaviour, when to seek help. Weekly phone call for 4 weeks, biweekly for 8 weeks, monthly for the remainder of the year

N = 88 (44/44)

Male: 66/48%

Mean age: 71.6/75.9

White: 77/70%

1 Year; Review of records, next of kin contact, discharge information

Readmission (heart failure, cardiovascular disease and all-cause), hospitalization days, mortality, cost of care.

Ross et al. (U.S.)

Educational software, a messaging system enabling communication between patients and staff

N = 107 (53/54)

Male: 74/80%

Mean age: 55/57

College: 44/53% (v. decliners: 26%)

White: 88/92% (v. 75% decliners)

Household income >$45 K: 50/56% (v. 76% decliners).

6 months, 1 Year; Mailed survey

Readmission, mortality, health status, self-efficacy, adherence to medical advice and patient satisfaction.

Sethares & Elliot (U.S.)

Nurse-led tailored message intervention based on perceived benefits and barriers to self-care of HF. Follow-up 1 week and 1 month after discharge NOTE: Patients in the control group were given information about medication and possibly referred to nurse agencies

N = 70 (37/33)

Mean Age: 76.8/75.7

Mean NYHA: 3.0

Education (years): 11/11

3 months; Health-measure scales

Readmission, quality of life, beliefs in benefits and barriers of treatment.

Jovicic et al. BMC Cardiovascular Disorders 2006 6:43   doi:10.1186/1471-2261-6-43

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