What's Next for Acute Heart Failure Research?
Abstract: Each year over one million patients with acute heart failure (AHF) present to a United States emergency department (ED). The vast majority are hospitalized for further management. The length of stay and high postdischarge event rate in this cohort have changed little over the past decade. Therapeutic trials have failed to yield substantive improvement in postdischarge outcomes; subsequently, AHF care has changed little in the past 40 years. Prior research studies have been fragmented as either “inpatient” or “ED‐based.” Recognizing the challenges in identification and enrollment of ED patients with AHF, and the lack of robust evidence to guide management, an AHF clinical trials network was developed. This network has demonstrated, through organized collaboration between cardiology and emergency medicine, that many of the hurdles in AHF research can be overcome. The development of a network that supports the collaboration of acute care and HF researchers, combined with the availability of federally funded infrastructure, will facilitate more efficient conduct of both explanatory and pragmatic trials in AHF. Yet many important questions remain, and in this document our group of emergency medicine and cardiology investigators have identified four high‐priority research areas.