Primary Outcome Measures:
- Composite endpoint of mortality, heart transplant, left ventricular assist device and readmission for decompensated heart failure. [ Time Frame: Six months after admission ]
Secondary Outcome Measures:
- Development of cardio-renal syndrome (loss of more than 30% of calculated creatinine clearance or need for dialysis) [ Time Frame: 1 month after admission ]
- Cardiac mortality [ Time Frame: 6 months ]
Procedure: speckle tracking echocardiography
Speckle tracking echocardiography is used for measuring parameters of cardiac mechanics: left ventricle strain and strain rate; left ventricle twist, untwist and torsion; left atrium strain and strain rate; right ventricle longitudinal strain and strain rate. Echocardiography will be performed within 24 hours of admission, 72 hours after admission and 1 month after discharge.
ADHF syndromes comprise around one million of emergency admissions per year in the United States, and the number of cases tripled in the last three decades, currently representing the main cause of hospital admission in patients over the age of 65 years. A recent study showed that among patients with similar risk in the presentation of ADHF, those admitted and treated in the emergency (in attempt to get early discharge) have higher mortality rate than those treated by hospitalization. On the other hand, uncertainty about the clinical course can also result in prolonged and unnecessary hospitalizations, which burdens the health system and consumes resources. Thus, It is vital to carry out studies that bring a better understanding of the pathophysiology of ADHF and to determine new risk stratification tools in the emergency department. Echocardiography is the most widely used imaging method and has a key role in the diagnosis and management of patients with HF. However, some methodological limitations of conventional echocardiography cause low reproducibility and intra and inter-observer agreement for some parameters, reducing their prognostic ability. In recent years, new technologies have been incorporated into the method in an attempt to overcome these limitations. One of these new technologies is echocardiography with "speckle tracking". The method, by its nature, has a significant advantage over parameters derived from conventional echocardiography, because of its ultrasound beam angle-independence. However, there is a paucity of data on this new technology in patients with ADHF in literature and we have not found studies evaluating the prognostic value of this method in a prospective cohort of patients in this condition. This study aims to develop knowledge of this assessment tool for cardiac mechanics in emergency care, exploring its potential prognostic value in patients with ADHF, aiming to assist the cardiologist in identifying eligible patients for early and safe discharge, and to identify those patients for whom hospitalization and longer treatment are recommended.