Heart failure is a very serious illness that can cause life-threatening complications and significantly limit your life span. Fortunately,many drugs have been shown to slow the progression of heart failure,and several drugs (angiotensin-converting enzyme [ACE] inhibitors,diuretics,beta-blockers) have been shown to prolong survival. Each of these medicines has risks and benefits that you and ...
Heart Disease: Prevention Myths - Topic Overview
There are lots of things you can do to lower your risk for coronary artery disease. Good habits,such as eating right,getting regular exercise,and not smoking,all work for most people. But many of the things you may hear about really don't work. These include: Hormone therapy. Doctors used to think that hormone therapy could lower your risk of getting heart disease. But taking estrogen ...
Endocarditis - Topic Overview
What is endocarditis?Endocarditis is an infection of the heart's valves or inner lining. It occurs when germs get into the bloodstream and settle inside the heart, often on a valve. The infection is usually caused by bacteria. In rare cases, it is caused by fungi.This infection can damage your heart. It needs to be treated right away. If it isn't treated, endocarditis can be deadly.What increases your risk of endocarditis?Your risk is higher if you have a problem that affects blood flow through your heart. That's because a blood flow problem makes it more likely that bacteria or fungi will attach to heart tissue. Some other things raise your risk too, because they can let bacteria or fungi enter your bloodstream.You have a higher risk of endocarditis if you have:Had endocarditis in the past.An implanted heart device such as a pacemaker or implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). A hemodialysis access or a central venous catheter.Abnormal or damaged heart valves or an artificial
Mitral Valve Prolapse - What Increases Your Risk
If someone in your family has mitral valve prolapse (MVP), you are more likely to develop it yourself. Other inherited conditions increase your risk of MVP, including Marfan's syndrome.Diseases that increase your risk of developing MVPOther diseases may increase your risk for developing MVP, including:Coronary artery disease.Any abnormality in the shape of the valves. Abnormalities can result ...
Cardiac Arrest - Topic Overview
In cardiac arrest, the heart suddenly stops beating. This causes blood to stop pumping to the body. If the heartbeat is not restarted within minutes, the person will die. This problem is also called sudden cardiac arrest.Cardiac arrest is different from a heart attack, which happens when part of the heart muscle dies because blood flow to it has been blocked.What causes it?Cardiac arrest is usually caused by a problem with the heart's electrical system. In most cases, the heart's rhythm is too fast and irregular. This problem is called ventricular fibrillation (say ven-TRICK-yuh-ler fib-ruh-LAY-shun). The lower chambers of the heart (ventricles) quiver very fast and can't pump blood.But cardiac arrest often happens to people who didn't know they had a heart problem. Some other health problems can increase the chance of a deadly heart rhythm. They include:Heart disease (coronary artery disease).A heart attack.Heart failure.Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (say hy-per-TROH-fik
Mitral Valve Regurgitation: Repair or Replace the Valve? - Topic Overview
There are two types of surgical procedures used to correct mitral valve regurgitation (MR): mitral valve repair and mitral valve replacement. Both of these are open-heart procedures. In mitral valve repair,the surgeon reconstructs the natural valve. In mitral valve replacement,the surgeon removes the valve and replaces it with a prosthetic valve. Things that affect the choice between valve ...
Mitral Valve Prolapse - Cause
Mitral valve prolapse (MVP) is usually an inherited (genetic) condition that affects the mitral valve tissue.1 Inherited conditions associated with MVP include:Marfan's syndrome.Ehlers - Danlos syndrome.Other cases of mitral valve prolapse are caused by conditions that affect the mitral valve, connective tissue, and heart muscle, such as rheumatic fever, lupus, and coronary artery disease.Other ..
Heart Attack and Unstable Angina - Symptoms
The most common symptom of a heart attack is severe chest pain, although this sensation is not always present. In a recent review of 700 people treated for heart attack, 47% came to the emergency room because they had symptoms other than chest pain, including shortness of breath, dizziness, weakness or fainting, and abdominal pain.2Women, older adults, and people with diabetes are less likely to .
Atrial Fibrillation - What Increases Your Risk
Risk factors for atrial fibrillation include:Age older than 60.Being white and male.Heart failure.Heart valve disease.High blood pressure.Coronary artery disease and heart attack.Obesity.4A family history of atrial fibrillation.5Surgery on the heart.A history of rheumatic fever.Infection, such as pneumonia or endocarditis.Lung disease, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ...
Mitral Valve Regurgitation - Treatment Overview
Treatment for chronicmitral valve regurgitation (MR) includes monitoring your heart function and symptoms, as well as treating symptoms as they develop. If MR becomes severe, the mitral valve will need to be repaired or replaced. Treatment for acute MR is immediate. Medications and urgent surgery are usually necessary.As you review your treatment options, consider the following: If you have ...