Restrictive cardiomyopathy, the rarest form of cardiomyopathy, is a condition in which the walls of the lower chambers of the heart (the ventricles) are abnormally rigid and lack the flexibility to expand as the ventricles fill with blood.
The pumping or systolic function of the ventricle may be normal, but the diastolic function (the ability of the heart to fill with blood) is abnormal. Therefore, it is harder for the ventricles to fill with blood, and with time, the heart loses the ability to pump blood properly, leading to heart failure.
The symptoms of a heart attack include:
A crushing, squeezing, or burning pain, pressure, or fullness in the center of the chest; the pain may radiate to the neck, one or both arms, the shoulders, or the jaw. The chest discomfort lasts more than a few minutes. It can diminish in intensity and return.
Shortness of breath, dizziness
Nausea, heartburn, or upset stomach
Sweating or feeling "the chills"
A weak, fast pulse
An irregular heart beat
Cold, clammy skin, or...
The size of the heart may remain normal with restrictive cardiomyopathy. In some cases, restrictive cardiomyopathy may be confused with constrictive pericarditis, a condition in which the layers of the pericardium (the sac that surrounds the heart) become thickened, calcified, and stiff.
A myocardial biopsy, or biopsy of the heart muscle, occasionally is done to determine the cause of cardiomyopathy. During a myocardial biopsy, a small tissue sample is taken from the heart and examined under a microscope to examine the cause of the symptoms.