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Approach to syncope in the emergency department

Abstract

Syncope is a common reason for ED attendance and it presents a major management challenge with regard to the appropriate workup and disposition. Nearly 50% of patients are admitted, and for many this is unnecessary; clinical decision rules have not proven to decrease unnecessary admissions. The European Society of Cardiology has recently developed guidance for managing syncope in the ED. This article highlights the key steps in evaluating syncope in the ED, factors involved in determining risk of a cardiac cause, and considerations for admission, observation or discharge.

  • emergency department
  • cardiac care, diagnosis

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