Chest pain is a common presentation in general practice. Each year about 1% of the UK population visit their GP with chest pain.1 The average GP will see, on average, four new cases of angina each year.2 The Euro heart survey of newly diagnosed stable angina patients showed that the incidence of death and myocardial infarction (MI) was 2.3/100 patient-years. This is increased in patients with a previous MI, short history, more severe symptoms and with heart failure or other co-morbidities, such as diabetes.3 The recognition of these patients as at high risk for cardiovascular events has led to the improvement of diagnosis and management of angina. Rapid access chest pain clinics have been developed to allow quick assessment of patients with new onset angina as part of a National Service Framework for coronary artery disease.
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