The use of echocardiography in acute cardiovascular care: recommendations of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging and the Acute Cardiovascular Care Association

Eur Heart J Acute Cardiovasc Care. 2015 Feb;4(1):3-5. doi: 10.1177/2048872614568073. Epub 2015 Jan 29.


Echocardiography is one of the most powerful diagnostic and monitoring tools available to the modern emergency/critical care practitioner. Currently, there is a lack of specific European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging/Acute Cardiovascular Care Association recommendations for the use of echocardiography in acute cardiovascular care. In this document, we describe the practical applications of echocardiography in patients with acute cardiac conditions, in particular with acute chest pain, acute heart failure, suspected cardiac tamponade, complications of myocardial infarction, acute valvular heart disease including endocarditis, acute disease of the ascending aorta and post-intervention complications. Specific issues regarding echocardiography in other acute cardiac care scenarios are also described.

Keywords: Acute cardiovascular care; critically ill patients; echocardiography; recommendations.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Clinical Competence / standards
  • Critical Care
  • Critical Illness
  • Echocardiography / standards
  • Echocardiography / statistics & numerical data*
  • Heart Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans