GPs urged to redouble effort to meet CVD target
THE MAJORITY of patients with cardiovascular disease are not meeting Heart Foundation goals for a range of management targets, research has shown.
A study of 2031 stable angina patients attending GP practices around Australia found only 14% achieved both a BMI of less than 25 kg/m2 and waist measurement of less than 94 cm for men and 80 cm for women.
Around 24% of patients met the BMI target alone, and 23% met waist circumference targets.
While more than two-thirds of patients achieved their HDL cholesterol target (greater than 1.0 mmol/L), only 50% met triglyceride target levels (less than 1.5 mmol/L), and 40% had LDL levels of less than 2.0mmol/L. Overall, only 17% achieved all three lipids targets.
The findings contrasted strongly with the perception of participating GPs, who believed many more of their patients achieved their goals than actually occurred. They estimated 44% of patients met both BMI and weight circumference targets and that 70% met all three lipids targets.
The researchers, led by cardiologists Professor Andrew Tonkin of Monash University and Associate Professor John Beltrame of the University of Adelaide, presented their data at the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand Annual Scientific Meeting in Adelaide last week.
Professor Beltrame said: “We need to educate GPs on what the actual targets are... we need to promote those guidelines.”
He said blood pressure control among the patients was “suboptimal” and advocated improved education campaigns for GPs, especially on blood pressure targets for patients with diabetes.
“For example with blood pressure control GPs probably perceive that it’s 140/80 mmHg... but if it’s a diabetic you need to be aiming for even lower targets of blood pressure... ≤130/85 mmHg.”