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ACC/AHA 2021 Chest Pain Evaluation & Diagnosis Guidelines: Top 10 Take-homes


Chest pain evaluation requires timely and accurate distinction between serious and benign causes. The 2021 ACC/AHA guideline authors provide 10 important reminders.

Noncardiac is in...atypical is out is one of 10 key takeaways for evaluating and approaching a diagnosis of chest pain in new guidelines from a consortium of professional societies led by the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association.

To avoid the potential for the symptom to be misinterpreted as a benign presentation, the guideline states that chest pain should instead be described as cardiac, possibly cardiac, or noncardiac.

Based on a comprehensive review of current evidence, the guideline provides recommendations for evaluation of acute or stable chest pain or other anginal equivalents in various clinical settings, with particular emphasis on ischemic causes. The slides that follow offer a topline look at the elements of evaluation and approach to diagnosis that the writing committee considers most essential.

Reference: Gulati M, Levy PD, Mukherjee D, et al. 2021 AHA/ACC/ASE/CHEST/SAEM/ SCCT/SCMR Guideline for the Evaluation and Diagnosis of Chest Pain: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Joint Committee on Clinical Practice Guidelines. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2021. Published online October 28, 2021.

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