Effect of Peer Support Intervention on Early Recovery Outcomes Post Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery


University of Calgary




Cardiovascular Disease


Behavioral: Peer Support

Study type


Funder types



UofC 17897 (Other Identifier)

Details and patient eligibility


Recovery from coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery is a complex process involving physical recuperation and psychological adjustment. The high prevalence of postoperative depression in this population may threaten optimal recovery. Peer support over the recovery period has promise to mitigate this threat. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of a professionally-guided telephone peer support intervention on recovery outcomes including depression, social support and health care resource utilization. In a randomized controlled trial, 185 male CABG surgery patients randomly assigned to an intervention (n=61) or usual care (n=124) group. Participants in the intervention group received weekly telephone calls from a peer volunteer over 6 weeks post discharge. At hospital discharge and at 6 and 12 weeks follow up, depression was measured using the Beck Depression Scale-II, social support was measured using the Shortened Social Support Scale and health care resource utilization was measured using items in the Postoperative Self Report of Recovery Questionnaire. Participants in the intervention group were also asked questions about their perceptions regarding peer support using the Peer Support Evaluation Inventory.


185 patients




36 to 87 years old


No Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

  • English speaking
  • > 35 years of age
  • undergoing first-time traditional (sternotomy approach) CABG surgery
  • an uncomplicated postoperative course
  • standard length of hospital stay (four to eight days)
  • had a telephone in the home
  • able to hear telephone conversation.

Exclusion criteria

  • had cardiac surgery procedures other than CABG surgery
  • resided in a nursing home or long term care facility
  • had any neurological or psychiatric disorder that may have impeded ability to self reflect or communicate
  • had emergent cardiac surgery
  • had sustained in-hospital post surgical complications of major significance (i.e., stroke, GI bleed, cardiac tamponade, renal failure, cardiac arrest, major sepsis of any origin, deep sternal wound infection, myocardial infarction with significant hemodynamic compromise)

Trial design

185 participants in 2 patient groups

Regular follow up care
No Intervention group
No intervention group - received routine follow up care following discharge from hospital after cardiac surgery (no peer support intervention).
Peer Support intervention
Active Comparator group
Support (informational, emotional and appraisal) in the form of like persons (i.e. age, gender) who have undergone CABG surgery with successful outcomes (post-recovery at least one year); peer support was provided by telephone for 6 weeks post cardiac surgery recovery.
Behavioral: Peer Support

Trial contacts and locations



Data sourced from clinicaltrials.gov

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