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The power of echocardiography in acute cardiac care unleashed at EuroEcho 2019


Prof. Susanna Price.jpg

Prof. Susanna Price

Professor Susanna Price (Royal Brompton Hospital, London, UK), President of the Acute Cardiovascular Care Association (ACCA), is thrilled that next year’s EuroEcho congress will have imaging in acute cardiac care as one of its main themes.

She says, “Over the last decade, use of echocardiography has grown and its power within critical cardiac care has been increasingly recognised. Risks associated with transportation are a particular challenge for acutely/critically ill patients and bedside echocardiography is ideal for use in the acute setting. Echocardiography now has a place across the entire pathway for the acutely unwell patient–it is used in pre-hospital care, the emergency room, general and cardiac intensive care, in the catheterisation laboratory and operating theatre. Echocardiography has also been incorporated in many relevant guidelines including resuscitation and myocardial infarction.”

Echocardiography is fundamental to critical cardiac care–it is now all pervasive in the acute arena.”

Prof. Price continues, “Much of the evidence base for imaging in cardiology has been gained from outpatient long-term data–very little has come from the acute and emergency setting so this is a whole exciting new area for research. Also, novel applications are emerging, including ways that echocardiography may be used in the most catastrophically sick cardiac patients requiring extracorporeal life support.”

When talking about the need for collaboration between specialties, Prof. Price explains, “Imagers may feel out of their comfort zone in acute cardiovascular care where immediate decisions are needed to guide clinical management, for example, whether a major intervention is required. Because of this, the EACVI and ACCA have worked together on several projects, including joint recommendations on the use of echocardiography in acute cardiovascular care,1 with additional position papers in development. EuroEcho 2019 will represent a unique opportunity for the two associations to work together at a congress, just as imagers and intensivists need to work together for a patient-centred strategy for those who are acutely ill. We look forward to sharing details of what we are sure will be an exciting and insightful programme.”

  1. Lancellotti P, et al. Eur Heart J Acute Cardiovasc Care. 2015;4:3–5.