Background: From a previous survey of cardiac nurses attending a scientific conference, we learned that these nurses adopted a healthier lifestyle than the general population. Aims: The aim of this study was to determine the overall profile of cardiac risk factors in a similar cohort and determine whether cardiac nurses continue to 'practice what they preach' in this regard. Secondly, we examined the practical value of screening a large cohort of individuals within a short time frame (total of 8 hours screening time) and determined the range of BNP concentrations within a 'healthy' cohort. Methods: Data on CHD risk factors were collected with a short self-report questionnaire. The sample consisted of 122 cardiac nurses from 19 countries attending a European cardiac nursing conference held in Stockholm. A venous blood sample was collected into a tube containing potassium ETDA. B-type natriuretic peptide was measured on-site with the use of a portable fluorescence immunoassay kit. Results: Most participants were female (89%). Participants ranged in age from 23 to 60 years with a mean age of 41 (S.D. 9.4). Eleven percent - all female - reported they were current smokers, 27% (34) had a BMI >25 and 27% of the sample stated they did not exercise regularly. Almost half (48%) of the sample reported a family history of CHD. As expected, all BNP-values were within the normal range. There were significant differences in BNP on the basis of sex (P<0.05) and age (P<0.05) and a trend towards increasing BNP concentrations with progressively higher BMI scores (P=0.06). Conclusion: This study reconfirms the likelihood that many cardiac nurses heed their own advice on lifestyle modification to reduce cardiovascular risk and therefore provide a good role model for the promotion of primary and secondary prevention initiatives.
- B-type natriuretic peptide
- Cardiovascular risk factors