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Routine follow-up for patients with prosthetic valves: the value of a nurse-led valve clinic

May 2012 Br J Cardiol 2012;19:76–8 doi:10.5837/bjc.2012.015

Routine follow-up for patients with prosthetic valves: the value of a nurse-led valve clinic

Denise Parkin, John B Chambers

Abstract

Introduction Whether asymptomatic patients with a normally functioning replacement heart valve require routine follow-up remains uncertain. The European Society of Cardiology (ESC)1 and American Heart Association (AHA)2 guidelines recommend life-long annual follow-up by a cardiologist. However, pressure on out-patient space means that such patients are often discharged with the expectation that their GP will follow them or that they will return should a valve-related or other cardiac problem develop.3 This trend is likely to be accentuated by planned re-organisations within the National Health Service (NHS).4 To investigate whether regular mo

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