The new year is up and running and I take this opportunity to wish all visitors and subscribers to epgonline.org good health and fulfilment in 2019.
My first blog post of the year is an invitation to you all to take a look at a supplement to the European Heart Journal that hit the bookshelves right at the end of 2018. I must declare an interest in the matter as I was the Supplement Editor but, even allowing for the natural pride in ownership that position evokes, I think this is a commendable addition to the literature on acute and advanced heart failure and will reward readers’ attention.
The bone and muscle of the essays in this Supplement was provided by my 16 distinguished fellow physicians from across Europe. Space prevents me name-checking them all here, and to be selective would be intolerable, but their credentials as commentators on these matters are undisputed and their thoughts on these subjects merit our attention.
I’m going to pick out two thoughts of my own, from my Editorial, to try and convey the enquiring tone of these essays and to encourage you to give the full Supplement some of your time:
“Patients [with Advanced Heart Failure] are vulnerable to repeated cycles of decompensation and hospitalization. Such episodes are debilitating for the patient and expensive for the health system. If we can intervene to restore equilibrium to patients in the vital time between the start of a phase of deterioration and the eventual hospitalization we could contribute significantly to their health-related quality of life and spare them the disappointment of yet another unscheduled hospital admission.”
“There is certainly enough evidence to identify levosimendan as one valuable element in an overall strategy of care directed towards maintaining patients in a condition of out-of-hospital stability.”
Pölzl G. Levosimendan in acute and advanced heart failure: still some chapters to be written. European Heart Journal Supplements. I1: 20(Suppl I):2018.
Harjola V-P et al. Use of levosimendan in acute heart failure. European Heart Journal Supplements. I2-I10: 20(Suppl I):2018.
Oliva F et al. Repetitive levosimendan treatment in the management of advanced heart failure. European Heart Journal Supplements. I11-I20: 20(Suppl I):2018.
Professor Gerhard Pölzl discusses the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology annual meeting, where several sessions were held on the use of levosimendan in heart failure.
Professor Gerhard Pölzl discusses the interplay between the acutely compromised heart and the kidneys and how the optimal treatment for individual cases is complex.
The HFA-ESC has issued a fresh position paper [Crespo-Leiro MG et al. Eur J Heart Fail. 2018 May 27. doi: 10.1002/ejhf.1236]. Here’s our first take on some highlights.
Professor Pölzl highlights a Supplement added at the end of 2018 to the European Heart Journal.
Thoughts from the expert meeting organised by the Heart Failure Clinic, Attikon University Hospital, 2018.
Professor Gerhard Pölzl highlights Hospitalisation for the management of acute decompensation being a critical moment in the trajectory of heart failure (HF) and one that has gloomy prognostic implications for many patients.
If we had a way to reduce the risk of life-threatening complications after cardiac surgery would we use it? Of course we would. It is for reason that this blog post highlights the recent work of Dr. Qiang and colleagues. See the details here.
Professor Gerhard Pölzl reports primary results from the LION-HEART study in the management of advanced heart failure where among secondary endpoints, patients treated with levosimendan experienced a reduction in the rate of HF-related hospitalisation compared with placebo.
Professor Gerhard Pölzl highlights the LION-Heart and LAICA clinical trials.
Professor Cynthia M Dougherty and colleagues outline an array of options for the treatment of advanced heart failure (HF) that create – quite reasonably – the impression that we are in a golden age of therapeutic possibilities for this difficult condition.