The Pulse of ACC

New Guidelines Focus on Ventricular Arrhythmias, Sudden Cardiac Death Prevention

New guidelines for the treatment of adult patients with ventricular arrhythmias (VA) or who are at risk for sudden cardiac death, provide recommendations regarding general evaluation of patients with documented or suspected VA; treatments, therapies and prevention of VA; acute management of specific VA; and VA in the structurally normal heart.

They also offer guidance on VA and sudden cardiac death related to special populations, including athletes, pregnancy, older patients with comorbidities, valvular heart disease, adult congenital heart disease, etc. The use of implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICDs) in patients with left ventricular assist devices, use of subcutaneous ICDs, and the role of catheter ablation of ventricular arrhythmias are also included.

Other unique highlights include several recommendations on genetic counseling and genetic testing to help inform clinical practice. The guidelines also stress the importance of a shared decision-making approach to treatment decisions. For the first time, these new guidelines also include a section on cost and value considerations, specifically involving strength of evidence surrounding ICDs and cost-effectiveness.

ACC, HRS, HFSA and SCAI Partner to Expand Maintenance of Certification Offerings

Cardiology Magazine ImageACC President Mary Norine Walsh, MD, FACC

The ACC, Heart Failure Society of America (HFSA), Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) and Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions (SCAI) have announced a partnership to develop new modules to help subspecialty cardiologists potentially meet collaborative maintenance pathway requirements equivalent to satisfying the American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM’s) current 10-year maintenance of certification (MOC) examination.

Through this partnership, which will move forward upon reaching agreement with the ABIM, the ACC will enhance its existing ACC Self-Assessment Program (ACCSAP) product line with CathSAP, EPSAP and Heart Failure SAP products to help fulfill the MOC needs of interventionalists, electrophysiologists and heart failure specialists. An analogous product for ABIM diplomates in Adult Congenital Heart Disease will be developed by 2021.

“It is a shared goal of ACC, HFSA, HRS and SCAI to help our collective members ensure their patients are receiving the highest quality, evidence-based care,” said ACC President Mary Norine Walsh, MD, FACC. “In offering additional pathways for cardiologists who wish to maintain their professional certification, we can more effectively and efficiently help busy clinicians keep up with current knowledge in their specific areas of practice.”

For more on MOC and related efforts, visit

TAVR Decision Aid Tools Now Available

The ACC’s CardioSmart Decision Aids hub recently expanded to include two new TAVR Decision Aid Tools that help patients understand what aortic stenosis (AS) is and what treatments are available. The first tool guides patients with intermediate or high surgical risk through the treatment options available for severe AS and helps them choose between TAVR and surgery. The second tool is dedicated to patients with prohibitive surgical risk/inoperable to help them evaluate the proper treatment and choose between TAVR and symptoms management. Visit to find out more and download these tools for free.

ACTION Registry Trial Offer Extended to Dec. 31

Participants in the CathPCI Registry and the ICD Registry can take advantage of the ACTION Registry as part of an extended free trial offer through Dec. 31. Experience first-hand how the ACTION Registry aligns with the CathPCI Registry and the ICD Registry to support facilities in achieving quality improvement goals and delivering guideline-driven treatments and interventions to improve AMI care. Registry Site Managers are encouraged to grant registry access to others at their facility to view the ACTION Registry dashboard during the free, full access trial. Contact a member of the NCDR Product Support Team at or 800-257-4737 with questions.

New ACC/AHA Guidelines Redefine High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure should be treated earlier with lifestyle changes and in some patients with medication – at 130/80 mm Hg rather than at 140/90 mm Hg – based on new ACC and American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines for the detection, prevention, management and treatment of high blood pressure. Visit the ACC’s High Blood Pressure Guidelines Hub for easy access to additional commentary, slides, key points to remember, the ACC’s Guidelines Clinical App and ASCVD Risk Estimator, updated CardioSmart high blood pressure patient tools, and a new “High Blood Pressure Guidelines Made Simple” tool. JACC Journals has also developed a specialized hub for easy access to the guidelines, executive summary and additional research and commentary that can be found at

Cardiology Magazine Image

Clinical Topics: Arrhythmias and Clinical EP, Cardiac Surgery, Congenital Heart Disease and Pediatric Cardiology, Heart Failure and Cardiomyopathies, Invasive Cardiovascular Angiography and Intervention, Prevention, Sports and Exercise Cardiology, Valvular Heart Disease, Implantable Devices, Genetic Arrhythmic Conditions, SCD/Ventricular Arrhythmias, Atrial Fibrillation/Supraventricular Arrhythmias, Aortic Surgery, Cardiac Surgery and Arrhythmias, Cardiac Surgery and CHD and Pediatrics, Cardiac Surgery and Heart Failure, Cardiac Surgery and VHD, Congenital Heart Disease, CHD and Pediatrics and Arrhythmias, CHD and Pediatrics and Imaging, CHD and Pediatrics and Interventions, CHD and Pediatrics and Prevention, CHD and Pediatrics and Quality Improvement, Acute Heart Failure, Mechanical Circulatory Support, Interventions and Imaging, Interventions and Structural Heart Disease, Angiography, Nuclear Imaging, Hypertension, Sports and Exercise and Congenital Heart Disease and Pediatric Cardiology, Sports and Exercise and Imaging

Keywords: ACC Publications, Cardiology Interventions, Pregnancy, Genetic Counseling, American Heart Association, Heart-Assist Devices, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Quality Improvement, Athletes, Specialization, Self-Assessment, Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement, Death, Sudden, Cardiac, Heart Defects, Congenital, Heart Failure, Mitral Valve Prolapse, Myxoma, Genetic Diseases, X-Linked, Genetic Testing, Registries, Arrhythmias, Cardiac, Decision Support Techniques, Certification, Hypertension, Decision Making, Comorbidity, Aortic Valve Stenosis, Catheter Ablation, Life Style, Angiography, Defibrillators

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