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ESC Congress 2012 Highlights

ESC Congress 2012, 25-29 August, Munich, Germany

  • ESC: a global society and a truly international congress
  • People are not making the necessary lifestyle changes to prevent cardiovascular disease
  • More efforts should be directed at making decision makers, healthcare providers and the general public more aware of the urgency of adopting healthy habits
  • Growing proportion of younger females among STEMI patients. Future preventive measures should be specifically targeted towards this group

Munich, 29 August 2012: “One third of participants at the ESC Congress 2012 in Munich did not come from ESC countries. This confirms that the European Society of Cardiology is becoming truly global,” said Professor Komajda, 2010-2012 President of the ESC. Japan was the main abstract submitter, although Germany had the most abstracts selected and presented.

“Delegates come from afar to hear about the latest research, which will change their practice. The ESC Congress is a forward looking and interactive event bringing the best in cardiology to delegates. Cardiologists who attend our congress will leave with useful information and new contacts.” This year close to 28 000 participants from 140 countries registered at the ESC Congress. “These figures show that the ESC has become an international forum. In addition, Munich 2012 focused on developments in medical education. We are proud to have launched the ESC e-Learning platform here. This is a unique tool for self evaluation which will be extremely useful to cardiologists and has been well received by our National Cardiac Societies.”

“The most awaited sessions each year are the Hot Lines,” said Professor Michael Böhm, Chairperson of the Congress Programme Committee. “WOEST, TRILOGY-ACS, GARY, IABP-SHOCK, and FAST-MI attracted the most attention in Munich.” 

WOEST is the first study demonstrating that the omission of aspirin in patients treated with oral anticoagulants and having coronary stent, is safe.

The IABP-SHOCK II trial ever performed in cardiogenic shock, was unable to show a benefit for the currently most widely used mechanical support device in cardiogenic shock.
FAST-MI (data from four French nationwide STEMI registries) showed increasing success of management of ST-elevation myocardial infarction, with mortality rates decreasing by 68% over 15 years. A worrying result of this study showed a substantial increase in the proportion of younger patients (i.e. below 60 years of age), especially women suffering from MI. The proportion of women under 60 years of age doubled (from 12% to 25%) and that of women under 50 years triples (from 3.7% to 11.1%). A fast growing proportion of young women were smokers (37% in 1995, 73% in 2012) and/or obese (18% to 27%).

The TRILOGY-ACS trial showed no difference in serious bleeding complications between prasugrel and clopidogrel.
The German Aortic Valve Registry (GARY) confirmed the good results of recent studies reflecting the growing experience in treatment and perioperative management of aortic valve disease. The high procedural success of more than 97% and the low rate of valve-related reinterventions (less than 0.5%) are also indicative of the latest improvements.

FRANCE 2, the French Aortic National Registry confirmed a high success rate using both Edwards and Corevalve bioprosthesis, with excellent clinical improvement.
FAME-II showed that fractional flow reserve (FFR) should become the standard of care for treating most patients with stable coronary artery disease and significant coronary narrowings.

Renal Denervation and TAVI were also hot topics in 2012. Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is a new technique leading to meaningful and sustained improvements in health-related quality of life in patients with severe aortic stenosis. The EORP registry on TAVI presented today, showed that in the majority of cases, patients are very old and very sick, with co-morbidities which would have made their journey to surgery a nightmare. Renal Denervation (RDN) is a novel procedure for patients for resistant hypertension. When traditional pharma fails, RDN has been proven successful in reducing blood pressure and improve quality of life.
New ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Management of Acute Myocardial Infarction in patients presenting with ST-segment elevation were announced at ESC Congress 2012. They stated that the prevention of delays was ‘critical’ to the management of patients with STEMI and recommend that centres equipped to perform primary PCI should deliver care on 24/7 basis and within 60 minutes of an initial call. Ambulance teams, therefore, should be trained and able to administer initial therapy, including fibrinolysis.

Recent data also prompted updates of two ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines: the ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines on the Management of Valvular Heart Disease and a Focused update of ESC Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Management of Atrial Fibrillation recommending the use of novel oral anticoagulants.
"Statistics presented at the ESC Congress 2012 (PURE, EHRA White Book) pointed to the fact that there are still very big inequalities in treatment across Europe”, said Professor Komajda who handed over the presidency of the ESC to Professor Panos Vardas from Greece at the end of ESC Congress 2012. “There is still much work to do, to convince decision makers to take action and coordinate efforts in order to encourage people to live healthier lives. Efforts also need to be made to foster a positive environment for cardiovascular innovation in Europe. I wish the new ESC Board success in the continuous fight to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease.”


Notes to editor

About the European Society of Cardiology
The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) represents more than 75,000 cardiology professionals across Europe and the Mediterranean. Its mission is to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease in Europe.

About ESC Congress 2012
ESC Congress 2012 will take place from 25 to 29 August at the Messe München centre in Munich, Germany. Information on the scientific programme is available here. More information on ESC Congress 2012 is available from the ESC Press Office or contact us at