The Effect of Psychotherapy on Anxiety, Depression, and Quality of Life of Patients with Heart Failure: A Randomized Clinical Trial


Int. J. Cardiovasc. Sci.




Abstract Background Patients with heart failure often experience depression, anxiety, and impacts on quality of life. Psychotherapeutic interventions have been used for chronic conditions, including cardiovascular diseases, showing improvement in mental health. However, no studies have assessed the effects of a psychological intervention using psychoanalysis on patients with heart failure. Objective To assess the effect of short-term psychotherapy on depressive symptoms, anxiety, and quality of life of patients seen at a specialty clinic. Method A randomized clinical trial with scales to assess outcomes before and after psychotherapy, under the perspective of psychoanalysis, with 12 weekly sessions. The Beck Depression Inventory, the Beck Anxiety Inventory, and the Minnesota Living with Heart Failure Questionnaire were used. The mean initial and final scores for quality of life, anxiety, and depression were compared using Student’s t-test for independent samples when distribution was normal, or Mann-Whitney test when distribution was non-normal. A bivariate p-value < 0.05 was considered statistically significant for all analyses. Results This study involved 32 patients, 50% were female, mean age was 64.3±11.6, and most participants were New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class I (56.3%). For anxiety (p = 0.196), there was no statistically significant difference between groups. For quality of life and depression, there was a statistical difference (p = 0.009 and 0.035, respectively), with a medium effect (Cohen’s d = 0.593) on quality of life. Conclusion Short-term psychotherapy in outpatients with heart failure showed an impact on depression and quality of life but did not improve anxiety. Int J Cardiovasc Sci. 2020; [online].ahead print, PP.0-0

Documentos Relacionados