Category Archives: Uncategorized

Reflection of my visit to Linköping by Loreena Hill

In November 2014 I successfully obtained the ESC Heart Failure Association nurse training fellowship (2015-2016). The host university was Linköping under the supervision of Prof  LHillAnna Stromberg and Prof Tiny Jaarsma. From the 16th to 20th March I had the pleasure of visiting Linköping, with the main objectives being to visit a centre of excellence in heart failure care and build networks for future collaborative projects. The week was busy with valuable opportunities arranged to discuss ongoing nursing research. Additional gains were an appreciation of the beautiful Swedish countryside and tips on Swedish culture.

I met a number of the expert research team at Linkoping and Norrkoping and enjoyed the chance to chat vis-a-vis about ongoing research studies. Those I would like to mention and say thanks are Jeanette Eckerblad, Lisa Hjelmfors, Ingela Thylen and Leonie Klompstra. Discussions with these individuals focused the objectives I wished to achieve from the HFA award as well as discussing potential collaborative research links. I enjoyed learning more about the “fun theory” embedded in the Wii-HF study and discussing my current PhD results with Ingela, Lisa and Jeanette. The week concluded with a review meeting with Prof Stromberg and Prof Jaarsma to plan “what happens next”. I look forward to learning from and working with my new European friends in the future.

Martje van der Wal, postdoc researcher at LiU

Martje van der Wal is working as a post doc researcher at Department of Social and Welfare Martje van der Wal Studies from the University of Linkoping since 2013. She is involved in the studies in our team on thirst in heart failure patients and in the TALK-HF study on discussing prognosis and end of life at the HF clinic. For that study, she collected data at the Dutch HF clinics.

Martje van der Wal is a nurse and a PhD who is working at the department of Cardiology at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) in the Netherlands. She is working as a HF nurse and project assistant were she is involved in several pojects concerning the improvement of care of cardiac patients.

She received her PhD at the UMCG with her thesis ‘Compliance in heart failure patients; who cares?’. She was one of the researchers of the Dutch multicenter COACH trial on the effect of education and counselling in heart failure. She was supervisor of 2 PhD students on compliance and delay in heart failure patients and telemedecine.

The upcoming year(s) she is planning to work with the LiU team on research projects and come to Linköping and Norrköping several times a year.

Visitors from Keele University: talking about co-morbidity and multi morbidity

Umesh Kahn, Julie Greene and Claire Rushton came to Linköping University 26-27 January 2015. Umesh Kadam, a senior researcher from Keele University gave a lecture on ‘Co-morbidity or multimorbidity? Understanding concepts, implications and potential models of care’ during the doctoral seminar of the 27th in Linköping. Julie and Claire came with Erasmus Funding and visited colleagues at the two campuses and also discussed future collaboration with us with regard to research projects in the area of comorbidity in cardiac patients and improving communication during consultation visits.

Keele University

Picture: Umesh Kahn discussing measuring co-morbidity

Important publication regarding counseling about sexual activity for individuals with cardiovascular disease

Jan Mårtensson, Bengt Fridlund and Tiny Jaarsma have a new publication in Läkartidningen.

“Returning to sexual activity is a common concern, and patients frequently request information on how to resume sexual activity. Partners also have considerable concerns, often more so than patients; why sexual counseling is important for both cardiac patients and their partners. In general, healthcare professionals, in caring for patients recognize the importance of discussing sexual function and activity and also express their responsibility to do so, although many healthcare professionals do not know what specific advice to give. Therefore, the intent of a consensus statement made by the American and European heart associations is to summarize current evidence related to sexual counseling in cardiovascular disease, and to provide direction to physicians, nurses, and other healthcare professionals in the practice of sexual counseling. ” Läkartidningen 49-50/2014

Congratulations Ghassan!

Cesar-Network would like to congratulate Ghassan Mourad who received funding from the project ”Från student till docent” in the county council in Östergötland for the study: Internet-based CBT for treatment of fear and cardiac anxiety in patients with non-cardiac chest pain – design of a randomized controlled pilot study.

This is the fifth year Ghassan received funding from the  ”Från student till docent”!

Ghassan also received 200 000 SEK from FORSS for the same study. A total of 3 applications have been granted 200 000 SEK each the past 3 years.

Cesar-network congratulate Ghassan and look forward to see the results of this important study!

Greetings from our American colleagues in Chicago!



Anna, Tiny, Naoko and Ingela just came back from their presentations at the Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association. This yearly event is always an inspiring happening for us, since we meet a lot of international colleagues that are Tiny AHAalso active in research. The presentations and discussions in the sessions are at a high level and the program was varied and interesting. I (Tiny) went for example to sessions on alarms at the CCU, heart failure in the life cycle, self-care and heart failure and gender issues. From our group we had 4 oral invited presentations (Anna and Tiny) and 2 posters (Naoko and Ingela). Anna AHA





Ingelas poster was namned ”Concerns about implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) Ingelashocks mediate the relationship between shocks and psychological distress”.

The objectives were to (1) describe ICD-related concerns, and (2) examine whether the relationships between receipt of defibrillating shocks and psychological distress were mediated by patients’ concerns related to their ICD.

Methods and Results All Swedish ICD-recipients were invited to this cross-sectional correlational study; 3,067 completing the survey (55% response). Their mean age was 66+11 years, and 80% were male. One third (35%) had received defibrillating shocks, and 26% had high ICD-related concerns. Regression analyses demonstrated that having received at least one shock significantly predicted symptoms of anxiety and depression (OR 1.58 and OR 3.04, respectively). The association between receipt of shocks and psychologically distress were mediated by high ICD-related concerns which explained 68% of the relationship between shocks and symptoms of anxiety, and 54% of the relationship between shocks and symptoms of depression.

Conclusion Having high ICD-related concerns has a bigger impact on psychological distress than receipt of an actual shock. Screening for ICD-related concerns in clinical practice may identify patients at risk of psychological distress, which could provide a specific target for intervention.