Disease knowledge, perceived risk, and health behavior engagement among adolescents and adults with congenital heart disease

Heart Lung. 2015 Jan-Feb;44(1):39-44. doi: 10.1016/j.hrtlng.2014.08.009. Epub 2014 Sep 30.

Disease knowledge, perceived risk, and health behavior engagement among adolescents and adults with congenital heart disease.

Jackson JL1Tierney K2Daniels CJ3Vannatta K4.

Comment: Jackson et al. examine the association between perceived risk of future cardiac issues with positive health behaviors (diet and exercise) in 200 adolescents/adults with CHD. As a whole the CHD survivors in this study demonstrated poor understanding of their future cardiac risk and had high saturated fat consumption. It is not surprising that adolescents were more physically active than adult CHD survivors. However, although greater risk knowledge was associated with improved diet (decreased saturated fat intake) it was also associated with less physical activity. The authors conclude that pediatric and adult cardiac care teams should be ensuring that CHD survivors understand their long term cardiac risk and the potential things they can do to decrease their risk for some of these complications.