Conference Coverage

Hybrid ACC 2022 resurrects the live scientific session


Regardless of the pandemic’s sometimes mercurial behavior, the cardiology community appears set to reclaim valued traditions perhaps taken for granted in the pre-COVID era.

They include the bustling scientific congress and its myriad educational and networking prospects, along with pleiotropic effects like unplanned reunions with colleagues and catching up face-to-face with old friends.

That seems evident in the growing number of registrants for live attendance at at the annual scientific sessions of the American College of Cardiology, set for this Saturday through Monday in Washington as well as virtually, for a global reach that was unattainable in the pre-COVID era.

Registrations had hit the 11,000 mark and were picking up speed in recent weeks, ACC 2022 cochair Pamela B. Morris, MD, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, said at a mid-March presentation to the media.

They had reached about 12,880 and were still climbing a week before the conference, the ACC confirmed to this news organization. By then the professional registration had surpassed 9,900, of whom more than two-thirds reported plans to attend in person.

Dr. Morris said there had been 117 international submissions for what turned out to be 39 coveted spots on the meeting’s Late-Breaking Clinical Trial (LBCT) and Featured Clinical Research agenda spread across eight separate sessions.

On-site participants at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center should head for the Main Tent in Hall D for all LBCT presentations; venues for the Featured Clinical Research sessions are as noted below. Their real-time virtual equivalents will reside on the online platform’s Hot Topics channel. All noted session times are Eastern Daylight Time.

Saturday, April 2, 9:30 a.m.–10:30 a.m. Joint American College of Cardiology/Journal of the American College of Cardiology LBCT (I)

Leading off the conference’s first LBCT session, the randomized VALOR-HCM trial explored whether 16 weeks of mavacamten (MyoKardia) could help patients with severe obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) avoid septal reduction therapy, either surgical or by alcohol ablation.

The 22-center VALOR-HCM trial with an estimated enrollment of 100 follows EXPLORER-HCM, which in 2020 suggested the novel myosin-inhibiting agent could improve symptoms, exercise capacity, cardiac remodeling, and quality of life in such patients.

Simply advising people with heart failure (HF) to consume less salt is one thing, but it’s another to show them clinical trial evidence that it might help keep them out of the hospital. The SODIUM-HF (Study of Dietary Intervention Under 100 mmol in Heart Failure) study, conducted at 27 sites in six countries, sought to provide that evidence.

The trial randomly assigned 1,000 patients with NYHA class 2-3 HF to consume no more than 1,500 mg/day in sodium or to receive standard advice to limit sodium intake, and followed them for a year for the endpoint of death from any cause, cardiovascular (CV) hospitalization, or CV emergency department visit.

SODIUM-HF “may provide a rigorous evidence base for sodium restriction in patients with heart failure and may truly change our practice and how we recommend dietary modification,” ACC 2022 vice chair Douglas E. Drachman, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, said at the media presentation.

In the same session, the CHAP (Chronic Hypertension and Pregnancy) study explored whether blood pressure (BP) control in pregnant women with new or untreated chronic hypertension could help avert preeclampsia, poor fetal outcomes, and other adverse events.

CHAP assigned about 2,400 women to receive either stepwise antihypertensive therapy to a BP goal of 140/90 mm Hg or lower or no such meds unless their BP reached or exceeded 160/105 mm Hg. Stepwise therapy featured either labetalol or extended-release nifedipine to start, the other agent added as necessary.

The LBCT block also includes the POISE-3 (Perioperative Ischemic Evaluation-3) comparison of the hemostatic agent tranexamic acid vs. placebo in nearly 10,000 patients undergoing noncardiac surgery. A separate randomization of the same cohort, to be reported at a Monday LBCT session, compared pre- and perioperative BP-control strategies.


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