The Year in Cardiology 2012: Acute Coronary Syndromes

Nick E.J. West


Eur Heart J. 2013;34(6):422-426. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Patients presenting with acute coronary syndromes (ACS) remain amongst the highest-risk of all acute medical admissions. Despite significant reductions in morbidity and mortality via refinements in treatment methods in recent years, such individuals remain at a high risk of recurrent ischaemic events and death. Whilst 2012 has brought a wealth of novel data in the field of ACS regarding diagnosis and both medical and invasive management strategies, continued focus on this high-risk patient subset is necessary to further our understanding and improve patient outcomes.


There have been few recent years where the management of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) has not been significantly advanced in terms of novel therapies and treatment strategies. In the last 12 months, new societal guidance has been published from Europe and North America, and there have also been important ACS studies concerning non-invasive diagnostics, stent type/choice, and adjunctive therapies designed to reduce infarct size in percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for ACS. In similar fashion to recent years, the area most published in and most likely to alter practice concerns the choice and utilization of antiplatelet/anticoagulant strategies for ACS patients managed either medically or with an invasive/interventional strategy. This review will seek to summarize the most important advances in these areas over the last year.