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The overall emphasis of this training program is the therapeutic use of medications to prevent and treat acute cardiovascular diseases. The course duration is 5 days. Clinical case-based scenarios will be used as vehicles for in-depth discussions of safe and efficacious cardiovascular drug use in diverse populations. The symposium discusses evidence-based approaches to managing acute decompensated heart failure, cardiogenic shock, atrial and ventricular arrythmias, pulmonary hypertension, and acute coronary syndromes. Current standards of care as well as controversial issues will be discussed. Principles of optimal medication use, and effective clinical communications will be highlighted throughout the course.

Professor, Department of Clinical Pharmacy; University of Colorado Denver, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

The goal of this symposium is to provide healthcare professionals and students with a comprehensive and contemporary review of fundamental principles of cardiovascular diseases and in-depth coverage of selected cardiovascular topics. Hence, allowing them to improve their clinical knowledge and skills related to cardiovascular diseases

After completion of the program, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the difference between patients with heart failure with reduced (systolic dysfunction) and preserved ejection fraction (diastolic dysfunction)and how each is diagnosed.
  • Delineate the role that  the various neurohomormes  and catecholamines play in the pathophysiology of heart failure.
  • Define stroke volume, CI, CO, EF, preload and afterload.
  • Given a patient with acute decompensated heart failure,  provide the appropriate Forrester hemodynamic subset.
  • Apply the documented benefits regarding the efficacy of the vasodilators, ACE inhibitors/ARBs, digoxin, diuretics, beta blockers, aldosterone antagonists, ivabradine, and the angiotensin-receptor/neprilysin inhibitors.
  • Given a patient with systolic (HFrEF) or diastolic (HFpEF) dysfunction, provide recommendations on initiation (drug and dose) for acute pharmacotherapy.
  • Given a patient with systolic (HFrEF) or diastolic (HFpEF), provide specific goals for pharmacotherapy.
  • Assess the role of anticoagulation and statin therapy in patients with chronic heart failure.
  • Given a patient with acute heart failure, provide self-care education regarding their heart failure management.
  • Define Acute Coronary Syndrome, distinguishing between NSTEMI and STEMI from the standpoint of patient presentation, EKG and biomarker changes.
  • Discuss the differences between a stable and unstable plaque.
  • Describe how the TIMI risk score (or similar scores) help define patient risk and help determine treatment strategy.
  • Describe the different forms of coronary revascularization and their different roles.
  • Explain how to instruct a patient to alter their risk factors for ischemic heart disease.
  •  Identify which patient populations are most likely to benefit from urgent PCI .
  • Explain the mechanism of action, indication, adverse effects, monitoring parameters for safety and efficacy, and contraindications for each of the following drug classes used in the treatment of UA/NSTEMI and STEMI
  • Based on primary literature Identify which agents reduce mortality in the treatment of UA/NSTE-ACS and STEMI.
  • Select and recommend an appropriate antithrombotic and antiplatelet regimen in the acute management of UA/NSTEMI and STEMI.
  •  Identify relative and absolute contraindications for using fibrinolytic therapy in the management of STEMI.
  •  Given a patient-specific scenario, design an appropriate acute and chronic drug regimen for the management of UA/NSTEMI and STEMI.
  • Discuss strategies to optimize the use of selected antiarrhythmic agents with respect to dosing, serum drug concentration monitoring, monitoring of adverse affects and drug interactions.
  •  Given a patient with acute atrial fibrillation (afib), design a pharmaceutical care plan for the acute treatment of afib for rate and rhythm control as well as anticoagulation strategies,
  •  Given a patient with ventricular arrhythmias, design a pharmaceutical care plan to acutely treat the patient.
  • Describe the Classifications of Pulmonary Hypertension (PH).
  • Compare current guidelines for treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH).
  • Compare and contrast the available therapies for PAH.
  • Given a patient with PH, develop a specific therapeutic plan to improve both morbidity and mortality.