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Heart Failure Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Heart Failure

  1. Topic Overview

    Systolic heart failure happens when the left side of your heart doesn't pump blood out to the body as well as normal. What happens to the heart? Systolic heart failure typically affects the left side of the heart. This is the side that pumps blood to the body. The heart's lower chamber,called the left ventricle,cannot pump blood as well. It's called systolic because your ventricle doesn't ...

  2. Topic Overview

    While there are certain symptoms that people with heart failure experience more commonly,there are many other symptoms that heart failure can cause. These symptoms are typically less common because they often result from more severe heart failure,when the body can no longer compensate properly for the failing heart. The first table summarizes congestive symptoms that result from fluid leaking ...

  3. Digoxin for Heart Failure

    Drug details for Digoxin for heart failure.

  4. Topic Overview

    Why is diet important for heart failure?Diet is critical in the treatment of heart failure. Sodium is the key nutrient that must be controlled in order to improve the status of your heart failure (prevent fluid buildup). But some other nutrients or substances also play a role as well. Heart failure can become more severe if diet and medicine recommendations for heart failure are not closely followed. Medicine and diet therapy are most effective when used together in the treatment of heart failure. Taking your medicines and following the diet your doctor has recommended for you will make it easier for you to breathe and help you feel better and be able to do more of your normal daily activities. A registered dietitian can help you make needed dietary changes by providing meal-planning guidelines that are realistic and specifically tailored to your individual needs and preferences. Why do you need to limit sodium or fluid?SodiumLimiting sodium to help treat heart failure cannot be

  5. Topic Overview

    What is restrictive cardiomyopathy? Restrictive cardiomyopathy is a serious problem that makes your heart muscle stiff. When your heart muscle is stiff,it can't stretch to allow enough blood to enter its lower chambers,the ventricles. So blood that would normally enter the heart backs up in your circulatory system. Most of the time,this leads to heart failure. Heart failure doesn't mean ...

  6. Pacemaker for Heart Failure (Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy)

    Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) uses a special type of pacemaker called a biventricular pacemaker (say by-ven-TRICK-yuh-ler) to treat heart failure. This pacemaker sends electrical pulses to make the ventricles pump at the same time. A biventricular pacemaker is implanted in the chest, and it connects to three thin wires, called leads. The leads go into different chambers of your heart. If there is a problem with your heartbeat, the pacemaker sends a painless signal through the leads to fix the problem. The pacemaker also can speed up your heart if it is beating too slowly. In some cases, you may get a pacemaker that is combined with a device to shock your heartbeat back to a normal rhythm if it is dangerously fast. The device is called an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator, or ICD. It can prevent sudden death. Your doctor will put the pacemaker in your chest during minor surgery. You will not have open-chest surgery.Your doctor makes a small cut (incision) in your chest.

  7. Frequently Asked Questions

    Learning about restrictive cardiomyopathy: What is restrictive cardiomyopathy? How can I learn more about heart failure? Getting treatment: What medicines do I take for heart failure? What's the right way to take medicines? What is a heart transplant? Should I get a pacemaker (cardiac resynchronization therapy)? Should I get an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD)? Living with restrictive ...

  8. Get started

    Heart failure usually gets worse over time. But there are many things you can do to feel better,stay healthy longer,and avoid the hospital. Self-care means managing your health by doing certain things every day,like weighing yourself. It's about knowing which symptoms to watch for so you can avoid getting worse. When you practice good self-care,you know when it's time to call your doctor ...

  9. Heart Failure: Taking Medicines Properly

    Medicines do not cure heart failure. However, they can make you feel better, help your heart work better, and help you live longer.Key pointsTake a list of your medicines or bring your medicines with you when you visit your doctor. Include both medicines that were prescribed to you by other doctors and any nonprescription medicines and natural supplements that you take. Review the list with your .

  10. Treatment Overview

    Treatment depends on the cause of heart failure, which type you have, the severity of your symptoms (classification), and how well your body is able to compensate.Treatment of heart failure that is caused by a filling problem (diastolic heart failure) may differ from treatment of heart failure that is caused by a pumping problem (systolic heart failure). Identifying the type of heart failure you .

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