New Appropriate Use Criteria Issued for Valvular Heart Disease

Report gives rating of multiple imaging modalities in real-world clinical scenarios to guide physicians

heart illustration

TUESDAY, Sept. 5, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Appropriate use criteria have been developed for valvular heart disease imaging tests, according to a report published online Sept. 1 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

John U. Doherty, M.D., from Thomas Jefferson University, and colleagues discussed appropriate use criteria to address the evaluation and use of multimodality imaging in the diagnosis and management of valvular heart disease.

The authors address the appropriate use of multiple imaging modalities available for clinicians in the evaluation of valvular heart disease, discussing the spectrum of patients, from asymptomatic patients to those with symptoms ranging from moderate to severe. Different categories of indications were created using a standardized approach with a goal of capturing real-world clinical scenarios. The clinical scenarios were rated by an independent panel, which determined whether use of an imaging test for each indication should be classified as "appropriate," with benefits outweighing risks; "may be appropriate, " with variable evidence or agreement regarding the benefit-risk ratio; or "rarely appropriate, " with lack of a clear benefit/risk advantage. Clinical opinions may vary for a specific scenario; even appropriate tests may not always be necessary depending on physician judgment and patient-specific preferences.

"As imaging technologies and clinical applications continue to advance, the health care community must understand how best to incorporate these technologies into daily clinical care and how to choose between new and established imaging technologies," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed ties to the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.

Abstract/Full Text

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