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2021 ESC Guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic heart failure

ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines

The aim of this ESC guideline is to help health professionals manage people with heart failure (HF) according to the best available evidence. Fortunately, we now have a wealth of clinical trials to help us select the best management to improve the outcomes for people with HF; for many, it is now both preventable and treatable. This guideline provides practical, evidence-based recommendations.  The format of the previous 2016 ESC HF Guidelines was revised to make each phenotype of HF stand alone in terms of its diagnosis and management. The therapy recommendations mention the treatment effect supported by the class and level of evidence and are presented in tables. In this guideline, we have decided to focus on the diagnosis and treatment of HF, not on its prevention. 

The 2023 Focused Update of these Guidelines is available here.


Chronic Heart Failure
Acute Heart Failure
Heart Failure

Main resources

Full Text and Related Materials

Full text

Corrigendum [published 14 October 2021]

Declaration of interest

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Scientific Presentation at ESC Congress 2021

Relive the presentation as it was live.

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More resources

ESC TV Interview

The essentials of the Guidelines in less than four minutes.

Slide set

Educational material.

ESC Pocket Guidelines App

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Congress News Article

Insights from the Chairs of the Guidelines Task Force.