Angioedema in the ED

Initiative Rationale

In spite of numerous new biological and pharmacological therapies for Hereditary Angioedema and the many educational activities surrounding the disease, patients are still receiving poor care in the Emergency Medicine setting. 

There are multiple options for addressing the deficiencies in the recognition and management of patients with HAE presenting to the Emergency Department. The options fall into two categories:

  1. Stand alone projects conducted by the HAEA
  2. Jointly executed projects with the HAEA and American College of Emergency Physicians as partner organizations.

HAE will be featured in all aspects of the Emergency Medicine Strategy with a dedicated section specific to Hereditary Angioedema in the EM setting. However, it is unwise to focus entirely on HAE as the vast majority of the emergency medicine practitioners will not have encountered a patient with HAE and they will not be inclined to participate in any activity that is focused solely on HAE. However, all EM practitioners routinely treat angioedema whether histamine related or related to other mediators and would greatly benefit from more detailed and targeted efforts on HAE in the Emergency Department. 

It is also critical to the success of any effort targeting the ED to have a collaboration with or at least an endorsement by recognized Emergency Medicine groups such as the American College of Emergency Physicians. The basic fact exists that Emergency Medicine practitioners listen to their professional organizations and not to the Allergy/Immunology societies or practitioners. Any project that is undertaken without a plan to have some sort of direct support by the appropriate EM society or group is destined for a poor outcome.