The ''Stages of Heart Failure,'' developed by the American Heart Association (AHA) and American College of Cardiology (ACC), will help you understand that heart failure is often a progressive condition and can worsen over time. The stages will also help you understand why a new medication was added to your treatment plan and why lifestyle changes and other treatments are needed.
Note: The stages classified by the AHA and ACC are different from the New York Heart Association (NYHA) clinical classifications of heart failure. NYHA ranks patients as class I-II-III-IV, according to the degree of symptoms or functional limits. Ask your health care provider what stage of heart failure you are in.
Check the table below to see if your therapy matches what the AHA and ACC recommend. The table below outlines a basic plan of care that may or may not apply to you. Ask your doctor or nurse to explain the therapies that are listed if you do not understand why you are or are not receiving them.
|Stage||Definition of Stage||Usual Treatments|
|Stage A||People at high risk of developing heart failure (pre-heart failure), including people with:|
|Stage B||People who have developed structural heart disease that is strongly associated with the development of heart failure (such as those with a history of heart attack, those with a low ejection fraction, valve disease with no symptoms) but without signs and symptoms of heart failure.|
|Stage C||Patients with known systolic heart failure and current or prior symptoms. Most common symptoms include:|
|Stage D||Patients with systolic heart failure and presence of advanced symptoms after receiving optimum medical care.|