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Congestive Heart Failure Medicine

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How Do I Take Care Of Myself And Manage Side Effects

Treatment of Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

Theres a lot you can do at home to take care of yourself. Below are some general tips for managing common side effects of heart failure medications. Your healthcare provider will give you specific advice tailored to your medications and overall health.

  • Check your blood pressure on a regular basis. Ask your provider to recommend a reliable home blood pressure monitor.
  • Check your blood sugar levels if you have diabetes.
  • Check your pulse on a regular basis.
  • Dont stand up too quickly after youve been sitting or lying down. Some medications can make you feel dizzy, especially when you suddenly change your body position.
  • Weigh yourselfat the same time every day, and keep a log of your daily weight. If you gain more than four pounds, call your provider.

Your medications play a big role in helping you take care of yourself. But healthy lifestyle changes are also important. Things you can do include:

Taking care of your mental health is also important. People with heart disease, including heart failure, often feel sad or depressed. Youre managing a lot of emotions and dealing with changes to your usual routine. Ask your provider about resources that can help you cope. Your provider may recommend:

  • Conversations with a social worker.
  • Online resources.
  • Support groups where you can meet people whore also living with heart failure.

How Should I Take Verquvo

  • Take VERQUVO exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to.
  • Take VERQUVO 1 time each day with food.
  • Swallow VERQUVO tablets whole. If you are not able to swallow the tablet whole, you may crush VERQUVO tablets and mix with water right before taking your dose.
  • Your healthcare provider may change your dosewhen you first start taking VERQUVO to find the best dose for you and how well you tolerate VERQUVO.
  • If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember on the same day of the missed dose. Do not take 2 doses of VERQUVO on the same day to make up for a missed dose.
  • If you take too much VERQUVO, call your healthcare provider or go to the nearest hospital emergency room right away.

Stage A Treatment Options

Treatment options in stage A mainly focus on promoting your overall health and disease prevention. If you meet the stage A criteria, your doctor will recommend lifestyle changes to slow or stop disease progression.

Heart Failure Doctor Discussion Guide

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Stages Of Heart Failure

In 2001, the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology described the “Stages of Heart Failure.” These stages, which were updated in 2005, will help you understand that heart failure is often a progressive condition and can worsen over time. They will also help you understand why a new medication was added to your treatment plan and may help you understand why lifestyle changes and other treatments are needed.

The stages classified by the AHA and ACC are different than the New York Heart Association clinical classifications of heart failure that rank patients as class I-II-III-IV, according to the degree of symptoms or functional limits. Ask your doctor what stage of heart failure you are in.

Check the table below to see if your therapy matches what the AHA and ACC recommend. Note that you cannot go backward in stage, only forward.

The table below outlines a basic plan of care that may or may not apply to you, based on the cause of your heart failure and your special needs. Ask your doctor to explain therapies that are listed if you do not understand why you are or are not receiving them.

The New York Heart Association clinical classifications of heart failure rank people as class I-II-III-IV, according to the degree of symptoms or functional limits. You can ask your doctor if you want to know what stage of heart failure youâre in.

What Medications Are Commonly Given To Patients With Heart Failure


The chart below lists commonly prescribed medications for heart failure. Theyre organized by medication class. A medication class is a group of drugs that are similar in some way. For example, all the drugs in one class might have the same active ingredient or treat the same problem.

Your healthcare provider will explain to you which drugs you need and why you need them. The regimen thats right for you depends on what type of heart failure you have.

Medication class

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Connect With A Barostim Ambassador

Barostim Ambassadors are real patients who volunteer to have conversations with potential patients about their experience.

The patient testimonials & heart failure treatment reviews above relate to accounts of an individuals response to treatment. The accounts are genuine, typical & documented. Responses to the treatment can & do vary. Not every response is the same. Patients were not compensated. Please review the safety information provided on this site& note that this therapy is not for everyone. Furthermore, the information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.

Key Result: No Statistical Difference In Adverse Effects Due To The Interventions

  • Primary Outcome: Composite outcome of adverse effects due to the interventions
  • No statistical difference in any of the components of the composite outcome except for worsening CHF symptoms .
  • Worsening CHF was driven by increased oxygen requirement within four hours
  • Secondary Outcomes: No statistical difference in any of the secondary outcomes and we will put a table in the show notes. Admission level of care was 33% vs 32% general, 51% vs 44% step-down and 16% vs 24% ICU.
  • The most obvious nerdy point limiting this study is the observational design. That means that unmeasured confounders cannot be controlled and could bias the results.

  • Unbalanced Groups Patients who received diltiazem were younger with higher baseline blood pressures , so they may have been less likely to become hypotensive, which was defined primarily as systolic BP < 90 mmHg, rather than a measured drop in BP.
  • Small Sample Size There was an 11% absolute difference between the two drugs and incidence of adverse effects. This difference was not statistically significant. It is possible that a larger sample size would have reported a difference that was statistically significant. However, the observational nature of the study would only provide low-level evidence.
  • Lack of Comparator Group It may have been useful to include a cohort of patients with AF + RVR without heart failure and examine whether their adverse effects would have been similar.
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    Is There A Treatment For Heart Failure

    There are more treatment options available for heart failure than ever before. Tight control over your medications and lifestyle, coupled with careful monitoring, are the first steps. As the condition progresses, doctors specializing in the treatment of heart failure can offer more advanced treatment options.

    The goals of treating heart failure are to try to keep it from getting worse , to ease symptoms, and to improve quality of life.

    Some common types of medicines used to treat it are:

    • Aldosterone antagonists
    • Selective sinus node inhibitors
    • SGLT2 inhibitor

    Your doctor may also recommend a program called cardiac rehabilitation to help you exercise safely and keep up a heart-healthy lifestyle. It usually includes workouts that are designed just for you, education, and tips to lower your chance of heart trouble, like quitting smoking or changing your diet.

    Cardiac rehab also offers emotional support. You can meet people like you who can help you stay on track.

    What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Congestive Heart Failure

    Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) Treatment, Management, Nursing Interventions & Medications Part 2

    Shortness of breath

    The hallmark and most common symptom of left heart failure is shortness of breath and may occur:

  • While lying flat
  • While awakening the person from sleep or
  • Due to fluid accumulation in the lungs or the inability of the heart to be efficient enough to pump blood to the organs of the body when called upon in times of exertion or stress.
  • Chest Pain

  • Chest pain or angina may be associated, especially if the underlying cause of the failure is coronary heart disease.
  • Right heart failure, left heart failure, or both

  • People with right heart failure leak fluid into the tissue and organs that deliver blood to the right heart through the vena cava.
  • Backpressure in capillary blood vessels causes them to leak water into space between cells and commonly the fluid can be found in the lowest parts of the body.
  • Gravity causes fluid to accumulate in the feet and ankles but as more fluid accumulates, it may creep up to involve all of the lower legs.
  • Fluid can also accumulate within the liver causing it to swell and within the abdominal cavity .
  • Ascites and hepatomegaly may make the patient feel bloated, nauseated, and have abdominal pain with the feeling of distension.
  • Depending upon their underlying illness and the clinical situation, patients may have symptoms of right heart failure, left heart failure, or both.
  • Recommended Reading: Congestive Heart Failure Signs And Symptoms

    Congestive Heart Failure Drugs

    There are several medications that can be used to treat CHF, including ACE inhibitors, beta-blockers, and more.

    ACE inhibitors

    Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors open up narrowed blood vessels to improve blood flow. Vasodilators are another option if you cant tolerate ACE inhibitors.

    You may be prescribed one of the following:

    voluntary recall of 5 lots of the drug Accupril due to the presence of nitrosamine. Nitrosamine, a known carcinogen with the potential to cause cancer, was found to exist in the drug at levels greater than the Acceptable Daily Intake as determined by the FDA. This recall is specific only to a handful of lot numbers and does not affect all Accupril tablets made by Pfizer. If you take Accupril tablets, talk with your pharmacist or doctor and they will help you determine if your medication has been impacted by the recall.

    ACE inhibitors shouldnt be taken with the following medications without consulting a doctor, because they may cause an adverse reaction:

    • Potassium-sparing diuretics and potassium supplements. These diuretics can cause potassium buildup in the blood, which may lead to abnormal heart rhythms. Examples include: riamterene , eplerenone , and spironolactone .
    • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs .NSAIDs such as ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen, can cause sodium and water retention. This may reduce the ACE inhibitors effect on your blood pressure.


    This may be achieved with:


    Your doctor may recommend:

    Surgery And Medical Device Options

    The goal of surgery is to make your heart work better.

    . Routes blood around a blocked artery. Learn more about heart bypass surgery.

    Cardiac resynchronization therapy . When your heartbeat is off-kilter, it can make heart failure worse. This treatment uses a pacemaker that sends timed electrical impulses to both of your heart’s lower chambers so they pump better and more in sync. Your doctor may call it a biventricular pacemaker. They could also pair it with an ICD . Read more on CRT, also called biventricular pacing, for heart failure.

    Heart transplant. This is done when heart failure is so severe that it doesn’t respond to any other treatments. Get more information on heart transplant for heart failure.

    Heart valve surgery. If a faulty heart valve causes your heart failure, your doctor may recommend repairing or replacing it. A surgeon can repair or replace the valves. Find out more on heart valve disease.

    Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator . This device is similar to a pacemaker. It’s put under your skin in your chest. Wires lead through your veins and into your heart to keep track of your heart rhythm. If your heart starts to beat at a dangerous rhythm, or if it stops, the ICD tries to pace your heart or shock it back into normal rhythm. An ICD can also act as a pacemaker and speed your heart up if it’s going too slow. Learn more about ICDs for heart failure.

    Recommended Reading: Congestive Heart Failure Abbreviation

    Cardiac Rehabilitation And Physical Activity

    Attending a cardiac rehabilitation program is one of the best things you can do for heart failure. Many people can benefit from cardiac rehabilitation – it can improve your quality of life, keep you out of hospital and have a positive impact on your mental health and wellbeing.

    Cardiac rehabilitation combines exercise and education sessions to help you make healthy changes. This includes exercise to help increase your strength, fitness and confidence levels. Exercise includes activities that make you slightly out of breath, while still being able to hold a conversation. For example, walking or riding a stationary bike. It might also include exercises that use light weights or other equipment. Youll get a tailored exercise program to suit you and you will be able to go at your own pace. Many cardiac rehabilitation service now offer home-based services via telephone and/or over the internet.

    Visit the Heart Foundations cardiac services directory to find a cardiac rehabilitation program near you.

    Medicines For Heart Failure

    Congestive Heart Failure

    Most people with heart failure are treated with medication. Often you’ll need to take 2 or 3 different medicines.

    Some of the main medicines for heart failure include:

    • SGLT2 inhibitors

    You may need to try a few different medicines before you find a combination that controls your symptoms but doesn’t cause unpleasant side effects.

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    Surgical Options To Treat Underlying Causes Of Heart Failure

    • Coronary artery bypass graft to prevent and treat heart failure caused by blocked arteries. During bypass surgery, blood vessels taken from another part of the body usually the leg are attached to the clogged artery to create a detour around the blockage. This is conventionally done through open-heart surgery, but some patients may be candidates for minimally invasive CABG, an alternative offered at UCSF.
    • Angioplasty, another treatment for blocked arteries. A thin flexible tube called a catheter is inserted through a small incision in the groin or neck into a blood vessel. In one procedure, a balloon is introduced through the catheter into the center of a blocked blood vessel. When the balloon is inflated, the blockage material is compressed back against the walls of the artery. A small metal device, called a stent, may be inserted through the catheter to serve as a permanent barrier to keep the plaque compressed. In another type of procedure, instruments are introduced through the catheter to remove the plaque.
    • Implantation of pacemakers and other devices such as artificial heart valves
    • Repairing congenital heart defects

    Surgical treatments for heart failure itself include:

    Is It Best To Avoid Grain

    Though no definitive conclusions have been made, veterinary researchers, nutritionists and the FDA continue to investigate the cause of diet-induced heart muscle disease . This leaves many pet owners wondering if they should avoid feeding grain-free diets, especially for dogs with heart disease or at risk for heart disease.

    Feeding a grain-free diet may have less to do with the problem, and the bigger concern seems to be dog foods with high levels of peas, lentils and chickpeas , Dr. Lefbom says. With so many diets on the market, there is no easy answer to what to feed each individual dog.

    Your best bet is to talk to your veterinarian about the best food to feed your dog, and what types of formulations or ingredients to avoid.

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    What Are The Symptoms Of Heart Failure

    You may not have any symptoms of heart failure, or the symptoms may be mild to severe. Symptoms can be constant or can come and go. The symptoms can include:

    • Congested lungs. Fluid backup in the lungs can cause shortness of breath with exercise or difficulty breathing at rest or when lying flat in bed. Lung congestion can also cause a dry, hacking cough or wheezing.
    • Fluid and water retention. Less blood to your kidneys causes fluid and water retention, resulting in swollen ankles, legs, abdomen , and weight gain. Symptoms may cause an increased need to urinate during the night. Bloating in your stomach may cause a loss of appetite or nausea.
    • Dizziness, fatigue, and weakness. Less blood to your major organs and muscles makes you feel tired and weak. Less blood to the brain can cause dizziness or confusion.
    • Rapid or irregular heartbeats. The heart beats faster to pump enough blood to the body. This can cause a rapid or irregular heartbeat.

    If you have heart failure, you may have one or all of these symptoms or you may have none of them. They may or may not indicate a weakened heart.

    What Causes Congestive Heart Failure In Dogs

    Congestive Heart Failure: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment Options – St. Mark’s Hospital

    Heart disease, which can develop into heart failure, is commonly seen in older dogs. According to veterinary cardiologist Dr. Bonnie Lefbom, Dipl. ACVIM, incidence of heart disease varies from between 15% to 30% of older, small dogs and 5% to 15% of giant breed dogs.

    Congestive heart failure, which can occur as heart disease progresses, is less common thanks to the veterinary treatments available today, but some dogs with heart disease will go on to develop heart failure. Dr. Lefbom says small breed dogs with a long-standing heart murmur are the most common patients with CHF. Large and giant breed dogs more commonly develop a weakened heart muscle.

    One of the most common causes of heart failure in dogs is chronic degenerative valve disease . Just like in older people, the heart valves can start to break down and leak, causing backflow in the heart and a heart murmur, says Dr. Lefbom, who practices at the Regional Veterinary Referral Center in Springfield, Virginia. Over time, with continued backflow through the valves, the heart enlarges. When the heart gets too big, fluid backs up in the lungs.

    Some breeds at higher risk for developing CVD include:

    • Cocker Spaniels

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