Give your views on the term "heart failure" to research project

27th April 2015

What do you think of the term heart failure and what does it convey to you?

That is the subject of research being carried out in people affected by heart failure and medical teams looking after patients.

The research is being undertaken by the Scottish National Advanced Heart Failure Service, but people across the UK are being invited to take part.

Dr John Sharp, who is leading the research, said the term was distressing, confusing and caused anxiety. There was dissatisfaction with the term among patients and healthcare professionals, many of whom thought an alternative term might be more helpful.

Heart failure is diagnosed when the heart can no long pump sufficient blood around the body to meet all its needs. It is not that the heart is failing.

Dr Sharp said: “The language used in medical settings can affect how people feel about their condition, how they understand it and how confident they are to manage it.”

Now the service is asking people aged 18 and over and diagnosed with heart failure what they think of the term and what alternatives they would suggest.

“We hope the results of the survey will reveal the most acceptable and least distressing term to describe the condition,” said Dr Sharp.

To take part, please complete the online questionnaire. It should take about 10 minutes. No identifying information will be requested.