Foreword

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Citation
European Cardiovascular Disease 2006 - Issue 1;2006:2(1):11-11

European Cardiovascular Disease 2006 includes the point of views of many recognised experts in the field. The publication provides a forum of discussion and share of knowledge for medical doctors that work in cardiology in Europe and offers the opportunity to follow what is happening in this rapidly evolving area of medicine. The content of this edition is of excellent quality and helps to further strengthen the practice of clinical cardiology in Europe.

The opening section on prevention of cardiovascular risk focuses on arterial hypertension, pharmacological intervention with statins in patients with acute coronary syndromes, atrial fibrillation in patients with stroke and prevention of cardiac events in hypertensive patients. New cardiovascular risk factors such as anaemia in patients with diabetes mellitus and the cardio renal syndrome are also discussed in this section.

Prevention of cardiovascular risk is followed by a section dedicated to some of the most recent diagnostic developments in cardiology, including brain natriuretic peptide testing and cardiac imaging procedures.

Over the past decade, an accelerating evolution in medical technology and clinical research is continuously expanding the choice of diagnostic procedures and imaging tests in cardiology. These advances in medical imaging make it possible to investigate patients with cardiovascular disease using multiple methods that vary widely in their technical requirements, benefits, limitations and costs. The appropriate use of these alternative tests requires their integration into joint clinical diagnostic services where experts in all methods collaborate. However, to achieve the cost savings without compromising the quality of patient care, the field of outcomes research needs more and more attention and application in the field of cardiovascular imaging. Some of the articles in this volume, focusing on non-invasive cardiac imaging, identify when imaging procedures achieve clinical effectiveness for patient care and management and further demonstrate that cardiac imaging plays a crucial role in the contemporary medicine.

The following chapters of the volume deal with other important aspects such as interventional cardiology, cardiac arrhythmias and heart failure. In this section, the physiological responses to percutaneous coronary intervention, treatment of patients with acute myocardial infarction and resynchronisation therapy for sudden cardiac death is discussed in detail. In Western countries, the most frequent cause of heart failure today is coronary artery disease. This has important implications on treatment and clinical management of patients with heart failure. These points and what have we learned from published trials and how to put the derived information into clinical practice are covered and discussed in the last part of the volume. Ôûá