News
Feb 4, 2015

The use of echocardiography in acute cardiovascular care


 

Echocardiography is one of the most powerful diagnostic and monitoring tools available to the modern emergency and critical care practitioner. It is now included in the universal definition of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), and in international guidelines regarding the management of cardiac arrest.

Read more about the use of echocardiography in the recently published article co-authored by Center Director Thor Edvardsen and Center Director of Cardiology Research Kristina HaugaaThe use of echocardiography in acute cardiovascular care: Recommendations of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging and the Acute Cardiovascular Care Association.

Posted by: Anonymous

Echocardiography is one of the most powerful diagnostic and monitoring tools available to the modern emergency/ critical care practitioner, and the provision of echocardiography is fundamental to the management of patients with acute cardiovascular disease.

Echocardiography can provide important information throughout the whole patient pathway, having been shown to change therapy in 60–80% of patients in the pre-hospital setting, improve diagnostic accuracy and efficiency in the emergency room, reveal the aetiology of unexplained hypotension in 48% of medical intensive care patients and provide information additional to that obtained from the pulmonary artery catheter.

Echocardiography is now included in the universal definition of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), and in international guidelines regarding the management of cardiac arrest. In the critical care setting echocardiography can be used to measure/monitor cardiac output and to determine abnormalities of cardiac physiology and coronary perfusion, as well as providing more standard anatomical information related to diagnosis.
Although the potential scope of echocardiography is evident, specific recommendations for its use in acute cardiac care are currently lacking from the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI) and the Acute Cardiovascular Care Association (ACCA).

In this document, we describe the practical applications of echocardiography in patients with acute cardiovascular conditions, in particular with acute chest pain, acute heart failure, suspected cardiac tamponade, complications of MI, acute valvular heart disease including endocarditis, acute disease of the ascending aorta and post-intervention complications. Specific issues regarding echocardiography in different acute cardiac care scenarios are also described

Center for Cardiological Innovation