Illness perceptions of Israeli hospitalized patients with acute coronary syndrome

Freda De Keyser Ganz*, Ofra Raanan, Gennady Shafir, Dassy Levy, Robert Klempfner, Roy Beigel, Zaza Iakobishvili

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Illness perceptions (IPs) can affect cardiac health behaviours and outcomes. Aims and objectives: To investigate IPs among patients hospitalized with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Design: Longitudinal survey. Methods: The ACS Israel Study is a national, biennial registry, enrolling all patients with ACS admitted to cardiac intensive care or cardiology wards in Israel within a 2-month period. Data includes demographics, medical history, and treatment for ACS using an electronic database. In 2018, a nursing component was added, including the Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and a two-stage cluster analysis. Results: A total of 990 subjects were surveyed. Mean age was 62.8 (SD = 12.5) and most respondents were male and married. Mean IP scores ranged from 3.28 to 6.06. Three clusters were found; one only of women and two only of men (one cluster with lower IPs and little previous medical history and cardiac risk factors and the second with higher IPs, greater medical history, and cardiac risk factors. Those with higher education scored lower on several IPs. Conclusions: Subjects were moderately cognitively and emotionally impacted by their illness. Men tended to perceive their illness as having either a relatively strong or a relatively weak emotional and cognitive impact on their lives, where women were somewhere in-between. Participants with an academic education perceived less of an impact of the illness while those with a previous history of chronic disease reported the opposite. It is recommended that educational interventions and in-depth qualitative studies be designed that investigate the development of IPs during hospitalization to potentially improve cardiac health behaviours, especially among those without a previous medical history and cardiac risk factors. Relevance to clinical practice: Those without a history of chronic disease or a lower level of education are less likely to absorb the full impact of a cardiac event while hospitalized and should, therefore, be monitored more closely and coached with greater intensity than other groups while still in-hospital.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-164
Number of pages8
JournalNursing in critical care
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2022


FundersFunder number
Belinson Medical Centre
Cardiac Intensive Care Unit
Israel Association of Cardiac and Intensive Care Nurses
Israel Association of Cardiovascular Trials
Sheba Medical Centre
Ziv Medical Centre


    • acute coronary syndrome
    • acute myocardial infarction
    • illness perception


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