Diagnostics (Basel). 2022 Apr 12;12(4):962. doi: 10.3390/diagnostics12040962.
Worsening chronic heart failure (HF) is responsible for recurrent hospitalization and increased mortality risk after discharge, irrespective to the ejection fraction. Symptoms and signs of pulmonary and systemic congestion are the most common cause for hospitalization of acute decompensated HF, as a consequence of increased cardiac filling pressures. The elevated cardiac filling pressures, also called hemodynamic congestion, may precede the occurrence of clinical congestion by days or weeks. Since HF patients often have comorbidities, dyspnoea, the main symptom of HF, may be also caused by respiratory or other illnesses. Recent studies underline the importance of the diagnosis and treatment of hemodynamic congestion before HF symptoms worsen, reducing hospitalization and improving prognosis. In this paper we review the role of integrated evaluation of biomarkers and imaging technics, i.e., echocardiography and pulmonary ultrasound, for the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of congestion in HF patients.