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ESC Council on Stroke


Council on Stroke: Who we are

  • Over 1,500 members worldwide
  • Over 35 volunteers in the Council's Nucleus & Board

Council on Stroke: the origins

While effective treatment of acute myocardial infarction substantially improved the outcomes of the vast majority of patients over the last 10-15 years, acute stroke remains a major threat with high mortality and/or permanent disability. The incidence of acute stroke is similar to the incidence of acute coronary syndromes, but the outcomes of stroke patients are significantly worse.

The rising body of evidence shows, that at least 30-50% (probably even more – this depends on the diagnostic approach) of ischaemic strokes are caused by heart disease (atrial fibrillation, valvular or congenital heart disease, infective endocarditis, etc.). Therefore, effective diagnosis and treatment of many heart diseases has the potential to significantly contribute to stroke prevention. Furthermore, several randomised trials recently demonstrated that immediate restoration of cerebral blood flow by combined pharmacological and mechanical (endovascular) techniques significantly improves the outcome of patients with ischaemic stroke caused by a major artery occlusion.

Thus, in 2016 the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) created the ESC Council on Stroke as a multidisciplinary constituent body to promote the interdisciplinary cooperation, education, research on stroke with the ultimate goal of reducing the burden of cardiovascular disease in Europe.

Council objectives:

  • The promotion, organisation and/or coordination of educational activities and research on cerebrovascular disease and stroke
  • The contribution towards the Scientific Programme of the annual ESC Congress and other ESC scientific meetings and symposia
  • The establishment of links with “sister” societies, the organisation of scientific meetings and contribution to joint sessions and focused workshops
  • The contribution (with sister societies) to the development and implementation of ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines
  • The development of position papers or consensus documents in collaboration with sister societies
  • The establishment of links with patient organisations and development of educational tools directed to patients as well as physicians
  • The organisation of an annual or bi-annual scientific meeting

Find out more about the ESC Councils' Internal Governance Procedures

Consensus report and opinion

The ESC Council on Stroke and the ESC Cardiovascular round table produced a consensus report published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology:

  • Cardiovascular care of patients with stroke and high risk of stroke: The need for interdisciplinary action: A consensus report from the European Society of Cardiology Cardiovascular Round Table. Access the report

The  ESC Council on Stroke and the ESC Working Group on Cardiovascular Pharmacotherapy published an opinion in the European Heart Journal Cardiovascular Pharmacotherapy:

  • Oral anticoagulation in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation and a CHA2DS2-VASc score of 1: a current opinion of the European Society of Cardiology Working Group on Cardiovascular Pharmacotherapy and European Society of Cardiology Council on Stroke. Read the opinion

Position papers

These council position papers have been published in the European Heart Journal:

  • Integrated care for optimizing the management of stroke and associated heart disease: a position paper of the European Society of Cardiology Council on Stroke. Read the position paper
  • The role of cardiologists in stroke prevention and treatment: position paper of the European Society of Cardiology Council on Stroke. Read the position paper 

ESC Congress resources

Nearly 700 stroke resources from ESC Congress 2021 - The Digital Experience are available. Access them now on ESC 365