We aimed to compare New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class in adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) patients with objectively measured cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET) parameters. This study included retrospective review of ACHD patients who underwent a CPET between August 2014 and April 2018 at our center. Patients were grouped according to severity of CHD, and NYHA class as recorded in their medical record or estimated from the clinical narrative. A total of 175 ACHD patients (mean age 30 ± 11 years) with NYHA class I-III enrolled in the study. The NYHA functional class was II or III in most complex CHD. There was a strong inverse relation between NYHA class and peak oxygen consumption, oxygen uptake efficiency slope, and the double product at peak exercise (product of heart rate and systolic blood pressure) (p<0.0001). There was no relation between NYHA class and ventilation efficiency slope (p = 0.37). In conclusion, NYHA functional class correlates with objective measures of CPET, however there is wide variability in measured exercise capacity in each NYHA classification. Therefore, whereas NYHA class of patients is a simple measure for assessment of functional status, CPET is an important tool to identify the source of exercise limitation in ACHD patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine