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Symptoms of Heart Disease

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Symptoms of Heart Muscle Disease

Many people with heart muscle disease, or cardiomyopathy, have no symptoms or only minor symptoms, and live a normal life. Other people develop symptoms, which progress and worsen as heart function worsens.

Symptoms of cardiomyopathy may occur at any age and may include:

  • Chest pain or pressure (occurs usually with exercise or physical activity, but can also occur with rest or after meals).
  • Heart failure symptoms (see above).
  • Swelling of the lower extremities.
  • Fatigue.
  • Fainting.
  • Palpitations (fluttering in the chest due to abnormal heart rhythms).

Some people also have arrhythmias. These can lead to sudden death in a small number of people with cardiomyopathy.

Symptoms of Pericarditis

When present, symptoms of pericarditis may include:

  • Chest pain. This pain is different from angina (chest pain caused by coronary artery disease). It may be sharp and located in the center of the chest. The pain may radiate to the neck and occasionally, the arms and back. It is made worse when lying down, taking a deep breath in, coughing, or swallowing and relieved by sitting forward.
  • Low-grade fever.

  • Increased heart rate.

 

 

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by James Beckerman, MD, FACC on February 16, 2012
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