ACC launches criteria for evaluating stable ischaemic heart disease tests


The American College of Cardiology (ACC), along with nine key specialty and subspecialty societies, has published a document assessing 80 potential clinical scenarios with the goal of assisting physician and patient decision-making. The criteria identify common scenarios in clinical practice and provide a level of appropriateness for the technology’s use based on a risk-benefit analysis.

According to a press release, the criteria are specifically designed to provide actionable standards that can be easily implemented in clinical settings. The press release reports that the release of the 2013 Multimodality appropriate use criteria for the detection and risk assessment of stable ischaemic heart disease marks the first time that multiple tests for stable ischaemic heart disease have been rated side by side for the same clinical indication. According to the document’s writing committee, the inclusion of multiple testing modalities leverages a greater knowledge base across the tests, promoting optimised decision making. Consolidation is also meant to eliminate minor differences among the prior single-test criteria.

As well as the ACC, the partners in development of the document were the American Heart Association, American Society of Echocardiography, American Society of Nuclear Cardiology, Heart Failure Society of America, Heart Rhythm Society, Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography, Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance, and The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

“The goal of the document is not to rank order diagnostic tests but to help guide physicians and patients when it comes to making reasonable testing choices amongst the available testing modalities,” said Michael J Wolk, professor of Clinical Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College and the chair of the writing committee. “These ratings help ensure that tests with the highest potential to benefit are being used, while tests are avoided that can cause unnecessary concern and complicated follow-up.”