Disclaimer 2019: The EACTS/EACTA/EBCP Guidelines represent the views of the EACTS, the EACTA and EBCP and were produced after careful consideration of the scientific and medical knowledge and the evidence available at the time of their dating. The EACTS, EACTA and EBCP are not responsible in the event of any contradiction, discrepancy and/or ambiguity between the EACTS, EACTA and EBCP Guidelines and any other official recommendations or guidelines issued by the relevant public health authorities, in particular in relation to good use of healthcare or therapeutic strategies. Health professionals are encouraged to take the EACTS, EACTA and EBCP Guidelines fully into account when exercising their clinical judgement as well as in the determination and the implementation of preventive, diagnostic or therapeutic medical strategies; however, the EACTS, EACTA and EBCP Guidelines do not, in any way whatsoever, override the individual responsibility of health professionals to make appropriate and accurate decisions in consideration of each patient’s health condition and, where appropriate and/or necessary, in consultation with that patient and the patient’s care provider. Nor do the EACTS, EACTA and EBCP Guidelines exempt health professionals from giving full and careful consideration to the relevant official, updated recommendations or guidelines issued by the competent public health authorities, in order to manage each patient’s case in light of the scientifically accepted data pursuant to their respective ethical and professional obligations. It is also the health professional’s responsibility to verify the applicable rules and regulations relating to drugs and medical devices at the time of prescription. The article has been co-published with permission in the British Journal of Anaesthesia, the European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery and the Interactive CardioVascular and Thoracic Surgery.