Heart Disease: 12 Warning Signs That Appear On Your Skin
Warning signs can appear on your skin and nails, which is why your dermatologist may be the first doctor to notice that you have heart disease. If you know what to look for, you can also find warning signs of heart disease on your skin and nails. The following pictures show you what to look for.
Swelling in your feet and lower legsWhat it may be telling you: Your heart isnt working properly.Many diseases of the heart cause fluid to build up in your feet and lower legs. As the fluid builds up, you may see swelling, which can extend as far as the upper legs and groin.Medical name: Edema
Blue or purple color on your skinWhat it may be telling you: You have a blockage in a blood vessel.When youre extremely cold, your skin can turn blue . If an area of your skin is blue when youre warm, thats can be a sign your blood isnt getting enough oxygen. The patient in this photo has a condition known as blue toe syndrome, which happens when one or more blood vessels are blocked.Without treatment, the lack of oxygen can cause the skin and underlying tissue to eventually die.Medical name: Cyanosis
Nails curve downward and the ends of your fingers are swollenWhat it may be telling you: You may have a heart infection, heart disease, or lung problem.For many people, these signs are harmless. That said, if your fingers and nails look like this, its best to find out if you may have a medical condition, such as lung disease or a heart problem.Medical name: Clubbing
What Are The Different Types Of Pulmonary Hypertension
The World Health Organization divides pulmonary hypertension into five groups based on its cause.
- Group 1 PH due to pulmonary arterial hypertension . PAH has many different causes, ranging from underlying diseases to certain drugs. PAH makes your pulmonary arteries become narrow, thick or stiff. Less blood can flow through, which raises the pressure in your pulmonary arteries.
- Group 2 PH due to left-sided heart disease. The left side of your heart pumps out blood to your entire body. If theres a problem on this side of your heart, it affects the right side of your heart and your entire pulmonary circuit. Blood backs up in your heart, raising the pressure in your pulmonary arteries.
- Group 3 PH due to lung disease or hypoxia. Certain lung problems cause the arteries in your lungs to tighten. Less blood can flow through your lungs, raising the pressure in your pulmonary arteries.
- Group 4 PH due to blockages in your lungs. Blood clots or scars from blood clots prevent your blood from flowing normally through your lungs. This puts more stress on the right side of your heart and raises pulmonary blood pressure.
- Group 5 PH due to other disorders. PH occurs along with other conditions like blood disorders and metabolic disorders. The exact mechanisms for how the condition triggers PH arent always clear.
What Is The Life Expectancy For People With Pulmonary Hypertension
The life expectancy varies from person to person. It depends how quickly youre diagnosed and what other medical conditions you have. Talk with your provider about what you can expect in your individual situation.
Pulmonary hypertension is a progressive disease. That means it gets worse over time. It progresses more quickly in some people than in others. Treatment can improve your chances of surviving pulmonary hypertension for many years.
Recommended Reading: What Is Congenital Heart Failure
What Can I Do To Recover After A Heart Attack
Take our quiz to see how much you know about cardiac rehabilitation.
If youve had a heart attack, your heart may be damaged. This could affect your hearts rhythm and its ability to pump blood to the rest of the body. You may also be at risk for another heart attack or conditions such as stroke, kidney disorders, and peripheral arterial disease .
You can lower your chances of having future health problems following a heart attack with these steps:
- Physical activityTalk with your health care team about the things you do each day in your life and work. Your doctor may want you to limit work, travel, or sexual activity for some time after a heart attack.
- Lifestyle changesEating a healthier diet, increasing physical activity, quitting smoking, and managing stressin addition to taking prescribed medicinescan help improve your heart health and quality of life. Ask your health care team about attending a program called cardiac rehabilitation to help you make these lifestyle changes.
- Cardiac rehabilitationCardiac rehabilitation is an important program for anyone recovering from a heart attack, heart failure, or other heart problem that required surgery or medical care. Cardiac rehab is a supervised program that includes
- Physical activity
- Education about healthy living, including healthy eating, taking medicine as prescribed, and ways to help you quit smoking
- Counseling to find ways to relieve stress and improve mental health
You May Like: How To Determine Maximum Heart Rate
What Are The Common Types Of Pediatric Congenital Heart Defects
A septal defect is a hole in the septum, the wall that divides the heart. There are 2 types of septal defects: atrial septal defects are holes in the septum between the left and the right atria ventricular septal defects are holes in the septum between the left and right ventricles. Because of this hole, oxygenated blood mixes with non-oxygenated blood.
A septal defect means that blood flows from one chamber of the heart to the other, instead of taking its normal path. For instance, with an atrial septal defect, blood flows from one atrium to the other, instead of going to the ventricle.
Similarly, with a VSD, the blood flows from the left ventricle to the right ventricle, rather than through its normal path to the aorta and the rest of the body. As a result, blood that has picked up oxygen from the lungs mixes with oxygen-poor blood. This can mean that parts of the body arent getting enough oxygenated blood.
ASDs and VSDs can be small or large. Some ASDs close up on their own as the child grows older. Others may be repaired using catheters or with open heart surgery.
Although some small VSDs may close on their own, some are so large that the left side of the heart is forced to work much harder. If it is not treated, a VSD can lead to heart failure. These defects have to be repaired with open heart surgery.
Another type of defect involves the heart valves. Defective valves may be caused by:
Other types of congenital heart defects
You May Like: Prognosis Congestive Heart Failure
About Congestive Heart Failure
Heart failure, sometimes called congestive cardiac failure , is a condition in which the heart muscle is weakened and cant pump as well as it usually does. The main pumping chambers of the heart can change size and thickness, and either cant contract or cant relax as well as they should. This triggers fluid retention, particularly in the lungs, legs and abdomen.
The major causes of heart failure include coronary heart disease and heart attack, high blood pressure, damage to the heart muscle , heart valve problems and abnormal heart rhythms. Of these, coronary heart disease and heart attack are the most common causes.
The major factors that contribute to coronary heart disease include:
- reduced emotional and social wellbeing
- physical inactivity.
Heart failure is more common in elderly people. The survival rate for people with this disorder depends on the severity of their condition.
Most common treatments for heart failure are medications and self-managed lifestyle changes. Some less-common treatments may require insertion of implantable cardiac devices or valve replacement.
Read Also: When Are Heart Palpitations Serious
Early Warning Signs Of Congestive Heart Failure
HomeEarly Warning Signs of Congestive Heart Failure
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, impacting 659,000 people every year. Its most common in people over age 65. Congestive heart failure is a life-threatening condition caused by various forms of heart disease and other complications. While the term failure makes it seem like your heart has stopped working, it just means your heart is pumping too slowly to meet your bodys needs. Its a serious condition that you must monitor and manage carefully.
Congestive heart failure becomes progressively worse over time. While its a chronic condition, catching it early gives you a greater chance of living a longer and healthier life. The signs of congestive heart failure range from mild to severe, which is why its important to monitor your health as you age. This guide will explain the early signs of congestive heart failure so you can seek testing and treatment as soon as possible.
Read Also: How Do You Know If You Have A Heart Attack
Recommended Reading: Signs Of Silent Heart Attack
Congestive Heart Failure At A Glance
The primary function of your heart is to circulate oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood throughout your body, and it performs this task around the clock. Lets run some numbers associated with your hearts workload: This organ pumps the entire volume of your blood through your body three times everyminute. To do this, your heart beats about 100,000 times a day, or 35 million times a year.
With congestive heart failure, the pumping function of your heart isnt working properly, which deprives your body of the blood and oxygen it needs to function optimally.
Congestive heart failure can develop for any number of reasons, including as a result of:
- Coronary artery disease
- Structural issues
No matter what causes the condition, it generally progresses in stages, which is why knowing the early signs of congestive heart failure is key.
Facts About Heart Failure In The United States
- About 6.2 million adults in the United States have heart failure.1
- In 2018, heart failure was mentioned on 379,800 death certificates .1
- Heart failure costs the nation an estimated $30.7 billion in 2012.2 This total includes the cost of health care services, medicines to treat heart failure, and missed days of work.
Also Check: Is Your Pulse Your Heart Rate
Is Chf Due Mainly To Heart Valve Disease
CHF is most commonly caused by valvular insufficiency. It is estimated that 80% of the canine CHF cases are caused by MVI. However, there are many other causes. Disease of the heart muscle , irregularities of rhythm, and narrowing of some of the major blood vessels can also cause CHF. Initially, MVI results in left-sided congestive heart failure. If left untreated, the heart failure may progress to involve both sides of the heart.
Types Of Congestive Heart Failure
Depending on the part of the hearts pumping cycle thats been affected, congestive heart failure can be of two types: systolic heart failure and diastolic heart failure.
In systolic heart failure, the left ventricle becomes thin and weak and is unable to push an adequate amount of oxygen-rich blood into the arteries. Its also known as heart failure with reduced ejection fraction.
In diastolic heart failure, the ventricles become thick and stick, due to which the heart can relax and let an adequate amount of blood fill the chambers. Its also known as heart failure with preserved ejection fraction.
Congestive heart failure can also be categorized into two types depending on the side of the heart thats affected. This includes left-sided heart failure and right-sided heart failure.
Don’t Miss: Seattle Heart Failure Model
What Is The Outlook For Heart Failure Patients
Very good, particularly now compared to prior generations, says Dr. Jacoby. We have medicines and treatments that reverse many cases of heart failure, and in most cases, the outlook is generally very good.
In cases where reversal of damage to the heart and affected areas is not possible, Dr. Jacoby says that the Yale Medicine team follows the patient closely and works to optimize quality of life while treating him or her.
What Causes Pediatric Congenital Heart Defects
In most cases, the reasons defects happen are not known, but some connections have been identified:
- Women who get German measles during their first trimester of pregnancy have a higher risk of having a baby with a congenital heart defect.
- The risk may also be higher if the woman has some types of viral infections, is exposed to industrial solvents, takes certain kinds of medications, drinks alcohol, or uses cocaine while pregnant.
- Women who have given birth to a child with a congenital heart defect are at higher risk of giving birth to another child with a heart defect.
Heart defects can also occur along with other types of birth defects.
You May Like: How Risky Is Open Heart Surgery
Does Heart Failure Show Up On Ecg
An electrocardiogram is often abnormal in patients with heart failure, although up to 10% of patients may have a normal ECG. Natriuretic peptides are a useful biomarker for heart failure and a negative result can rule out the diagnosis. This can be helpful in determining who should be referred for echocardiogram.
Donât Miss: How To Slow Down My Heart Rate
What Dietary Changes Should I Make
Your provider will give you specific recommendations. One key step involves reducing your sodium intake. This means:
- Avoid adding salt at the table or using seasoning salt.
- Avoid smoked, cured, salted and canned meat products.
- Buy foods that are low sodium or low salt.
- Limit fast foods and prepared foods.
Other dietary changes include:
- Eat foods high in fiber .
- Eat foods high in potassium .
- Eat foods high in magnesium .
- Limit foods that contain refined sugar, saturated fat and cholesterol.
Don’t Miss: What Is Afib Heart Rate
What Is The Difference Between Right
Right-sided congestive heart failure causes poor venous blood return to the heart. In other words, when the heart contracts or pumps, instead of the right ventricle pushing the blood through the lungs for oxygenation, some blood leaks through the tricuspid valve back into the right atrium. This blood backs up into the systemic circulation and consequently becomes congested. Fluid accumulates in the abdomen, interfering with the function of the organs in these areas. The abdomen may fill with fluid, a condition called ascites. Fluid may also leak from veins in the limbs, causing swelling, known as peripheral edema.
In left-sided congestive heart failure , when the heart contracts or pumps, instead of the left ventricle pushing the blood into the systemic circulation, some blood leaks through the mitral valve back into the left atrium and then it backs up into the lungs. Fluid then seeps into the lung tissue resulting in pulmonary edema. This causes coughing and difficulty breathing. Left-sided congestive heart failure is the most common form of congestive heart failure. The classic signs of heart failure, coughing and fluid in the chest, are most commonly caused by LS-CHF.
What Are The Most Common Symptoms Of Congestive Heart Failure
Swelling is the most common symptom of congestive heart failure. Often, swelling is most apparent in the extremities, especially in the legs and ankles, but it can occur in other parts of the body as well. Fluid collection in and around the lungs can cause shortness of breath , especially during physical activity or when lying down. Other common symptoms of heart failure include fatigue, loss of appetite, and weight gain.
Also Check: Safe Heart Rate When Exercising
How Can I Prevent Coronary Artery Disease
You cant always prevent coronary artery disease. Thats because some risk factors are out of your control. But theres a lot you can do to lower your risk. Many strategies to lower your risk also help manage your condition once youre diagnosed.
You can lower your risk of coronary artery disease and help prevent it from getting worse by doing the following:
Recommended Reading: How Long Does Heart Valve Surgery Take
Living Well With Heart Failure
The Heart Foundation has developed a range of resources for people living with heart failure, and their families and carers.
- Living well with heart failure booklet, which includes information about what to do when you feel sick, managing symptoms, and monitoring your fluid and salt intake.
- Living well with heart failure video series, which includes seven videos covering topics to help you manage your condition. The series is available in a range of languages.
- Heart failure fact sheet, which includes questions to ask your health professional and what changes you might need to make to your daily life.
- Heart failure action plan, which helps you to identify the most important parts of your heart failure management to focus on right now.
Access these resources on the Heart Foundation website.
You May Like: Does Amlodipine Lower Heart Rate
Contact Sonas For Home Health Care Services
If your family member has recently been diagnosed with congestive heart failure, now may be the ideal time to consider home health care. A home care service provider can be with your loved one on a customized schedule that is right for your family.
This means that even if you are not able to be with them, you can be confident in knowing they are getting everything they need to stay healthy, safe, and comfortable, as well as maintain as much independence and control as possible.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home health care services in Florida, contact the caring staff at Sonas Home Health Care. Call today at .
How Should I Manage My Pulmonary Hypertension Medications
You may be taking many different medications to treat PH and other medical conditions. It can be a lot to keep track of. Heres some advice.
- Know the names of all your medications, and know how they work. Keep a list with you at all times.
- Take your medications at the same time every day. If you forget a dose, dont take two doses to make up for the dose you missed. Call your provider and ask what to do.
- Dont take any over-the-counter medications unless you ask your provider first. Some cold and flu medicines and pain relievers can cause problems for people with heart failure.
- Avoid any over-the-counter medications that have cautions for people with high blood pressure.
- Dont stop taking any medication or make any changes to your medications unless you first talk with your provider.
- Avoid herbal supplements including herbal tea. Herbal products may interact with some of your medications.
Read Also: Recovery From Open Heart Surgery