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Original Research |

Management of Cardiac Sarcoidosis in the United StatesManagement of Cardiac Sarcoidosis: A Delphi Study

Nabeel Y. Hamzeh, MD, FCCP; Frederick S. Wamboldt, MD; Howard D. Weinberger, MD
Author and Funding Information

From the Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences (Dr Hamzeh), the Division of Psychosocial Medicine (Dr Wamboldt), and the Division of Cardiology (Dr Weinberger), National Jewish Health, Denver, CO.

Correspondence to: Nabeel Hamzeh, MD, FCCP, National Jewish Health, Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, 1400 Jackson St, G204, Denver, CO 80206; e-mail: hamzehn@njhealth.org


Funding/Support: Supported by NIH/NCATS Colorado CTSI Grant Number UL1 TR000154. Contents are the authors' sole responsibility and do not necessarily represent official NIH views.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (http://www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


Chest. 2012;141(1):154-162. doi:10.1378/chest.11-0263
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Background:  No formal guidelines exist to guide physicians caring for patients with sarcoidosis in their screening for management of patients with cardiac sarcoidosis. We conducted a modified Delphi study to investigate if a consensus could be reached on the best approaches for screening for and management of cardiac sarcoidosis.

Methods:  A modified Delphi study design with two rounds of questionnaires was used to investigate if a consensus existed among sarcoid experts in the United States on the best management approaches for cardiac sarcoidosis. Experts were identified based on their national reputation as sarcoid experts and by being actively involved in sarcoidosis clinics at their institutions.

Results:  Overall agreement was low to moderate. Agreement was reached on the role of history, physical examination, and 12-lead ECG in screening, echocardiogram, Holter monitor, myocardial fluorodeoxyglucose PET scan, and cardiac MRI in workup, and steroids in treatment. Agreement was not reached on the role of signal-averaged ECG in screening, optimum dose of prednisone, use of steroid-sparing agents, and duration of treatment. Several comments underscore the diverse approaches and uncertainty that exist in managing cardiac sarcoidosis.

Conclusions:  Our study highlights the dilemma that sarcoid experts face in their approach to cardiac sarcoidosis. It also highlights the lack of agreement among sarcoid experts on key aspects of diagnosis and management and stresses the importance of collaborative efforts to investigate the best strategies for screening for and management of cardiac sarcoidosis.

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