New mnemonic a short cut to better heart failure treatment

New mnemonic a short cut to better heart failure treatment

Heart failure is a serious condition for which everyday prescribing patterns often fall short of evidence-based recommended treatments.

With the aim of counteracting underprescribing and improving patient outcomes, CTC researchers reviewed the contemporary evidence base for the best way to treat systolic heart failure.They then devised a mnemonic to help clinicians remember and students learn the litany of treatments recommended for systolic heart failure.

They found strong evidence to support the use of beta-blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (or angiotensin receptor blockers). The complete list of treatments consists of:


Angiotensin-converting enzyme  inhibitors (or angiotensin receptor inhibitors)

Neprilysin inhibitors (promising, but currently hydralazine-isosorbide dinitrate)


Aldosterone antagonists


Devices (automatic implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (AICD) or cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) or both)


The mnemonic is BANDAID2.

Mnemonics are helpful for clinicians, but an essential tool for medical students. They supply a memory peg for complex information.

This study was a summer project for Noel Chia, a final-year medical student, who completed a literature review of current evidence for heart failure treatment and presented the results, with the new mnemonic, in an article published in theInternal Medicine Journal.The project was supervised by Professor Tony Keech with the help of Dr Jordan Fulcher.

Each year several students spend their summer holidays at the CTC, taking the opportunity to complete a project, to gain supervised research experience and to contribute to the work of the CTC's postgraduate students and academic staff.

15 Jul 2015