Wednesday, February 1, 2023

What Is Congestive Heart Failure Mean

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What Can I Expect In The Long Term

What is congestive heart failure?

Your condition may improve with medication, surgery, or lifestyle changes. Your outlook depends on how advanced your CHF is and whether you have other health conditions to treat, like diabetes or high blood pressure.

The earlier your condition is diagnosed, the better your outlook. Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you.

What Is Chronic Heart Failure

Chronic heart failure, otherwise known as congestive heart failure or heart failure, is an ongoing inability of the heart to pump enough blood through the body to ensure a sufficient supply of oxygen. The causes of the condition vary, but some of the most common risk factors include old age, diabetes, high blood pressure and being overweight. Chronic heart failure is most common in men.

The conditionâs name is potentially confusing the term âheart failureâ does not mean that the heart has stopped or is failing completely, but that it is weaker than is normal in a healthy person. In some cases, the condition can be mild, causing symptoms that may only be noticeable when exercising, in others, the condition may be more severe, causing symptoms that may be life-threatening, even while at rest.

The most common symptoms of chronic heart failure include shortness of breath, tiredness, swelling of the legs and ankles, chest pain and a cough. It most commonly affects older people and people with other heart conditions and is typically treated with a combination of lifestyle and diet changes, and medications. Chronic heart failure is typically a long-term condition that gradually worsens over time. This is the feature that differentiates it from acute heart failure, which develops very suddenly. It cannot typically be cured, but symptoms can be managed effectively.

Stage 3 Of Congestive Heart Failure

Its not uncommon for congestive heart failure to be accompanied by other heart conditions. If you are diagnosed with stage three CHF, along with another heart condition, its likely that youll have difficulty performing regular tasks. Small bouts of exercise or minimal doses of physical activity will cause the same symptoms mentioned in stage two fatigue, shortness of breath, and heart palpitations. In stage three, lifestyle changes are not as effective, and a surgical procedure may be necessary. However, its never too late to talk to a doctor about your heart condition and what the future may look like.

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When Should I Get Emergency Care

Go to the ER or call 911 if you have:

  • New, unexplained, and severe chest pain that comes with shortness of breath, sweating, nausea, or weakness
  • Fast heart rate , especially if you are short of breath
  • Shortness of breath that doesn’t get better if you rest
  • Sudden weakness, or you can’t move your arms or legs
  • Sudden, severe headache
  • Fainting spells

Copd And Chf Often Occur Together

Congestive heart failure

Experts are not entirely sure exactly why people with COPD can also have heart failure. But as mentioned earlier, the lung damage from COPD does place extra stress on the heart. In the end, both conditions result in respiratory symptoms. When they occur together, studies show that the risk of negative outcomes is much increased4

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Prevention Of Chronic Heart Failure

A number of measures can be taken to help lessen the risk of developing chronic heart failure. These include:

  • Taking regular exercise, such as walking or swimming
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Maintaining a healthy and nutritious diet with plenty of vegetables and lean meats
  • Limiting alcohol intake
  • Stopping smoking

It is also important to address any underlying risk factors, such as high blood pressure and anemia. Doctors are able to advise on how best to manage these conditions.

Diagnostic Tests And Procedures

This animation discusses some of the tests used to diagnose heart failure. These tests may include an electrocardiogram to look at your hearts electrical activity, an echocardiogram to measure how well your heart is working and look at the structure, and a chest X-ray to see if your heart is enlarged or there is fluid in your lungs. Other tests may include blood tests and an exercise, or stress test. .

Blood tests

Your doctor may order to check the levels of certain molecules, such as brain natriuretic peptide . These levels rise during heart failure. Blood tests can also show how well your liver and your kidneys are working.

Tests to measure your ejection fraction

Your doctor may order an echocardiography or other imaging tests to measure your ejection fraction. Your ejection fraction is the percent of the blood in the lower left chamber of your heart that is pumped out of your heart with each heartbeat. Ejection fraction tells your doctor how well your heart pumps. This helps your doctor diagnose the type of heart failure you have and guide your treatment.

  • If 40% or less of the blood in your left ventricle is pumped out in one beat, you have heart failure with reduced ejection fraction.
  • If 50% or more of the blood in your left ventricle is pumped out in one beat, you have heart failure with preserved ejection fraction.

If your ejection fraction is somewhere in between , you may be diagnosed with heart failure with borderline ejection fraction.

Other tests

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Social Determinants Of Health

Social determinants such as disadvantage, status, lack of , , access to play an important role in myocardial infarction risk and survival. Studies have shown that low is associated with an increased risk of poorer survival. There are well-documented disparities in myocardial infarction survival by , , , and census-tract-level .

Race: In the U.S. have a greater burden of myocardial infarction and other cardiovascular events. On a population level, there is a higher overall of risk factors that are unrecognized and therefore not treated, which places these individuals at a greater likelihood of experiencing adverse outcomes and therefore potentially higher and .

Socioeconomic status: Among individuals who live in the low- areas, which is close to 25% of the US population, myocardial infarctions occurred twice as often compared with people who lived in higher SES areas.

Immigration status: In 2018 many lawfully present who are eligible for coverage remain uninsured because immigrant families face a range of enrollment barriers, including fear, confusion about eligibility policies, difficulty navigating the enrollment process, and and challenges. Uninsured are ineligible for coverage options due to their immigration status.

Health care access: Lack of and financial concerns about accessing care were associated with delays in seeking emergency care for acute myocardial infarction which can have significant, adverse consequences on patient outcomes.

What You Can Do For Your Loved One

Congestive Heart Failure – What is it?

In addition to symptom management, its important for the family caregiver to learn how to recognize the end-of-life signs for CHF, and when they should contact hospice. Hospice care will be able to address the specific needs of CHF patients in their final days, and help them to get the most out of what time they have left.

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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 orirregular 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 Is The Final Stage Of Congestive Heart Failure

The final stage of congestive heart failure is characterized by complete inactivity and severe chest pain with fatigue. With increase of progression in the final state the general prognosis starts to deteriorate. The illness becomes more severe as the patient becomes unable to carry out almost any physical activity.

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What Things Lead To Or Cause Congestive Heart Failure

Several factors can cause congestive heart failure including high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathy, diabetes, and others. Heart failure is a condition in which the heart is unable to pump blood to body tissues efficiently. Congestive heart failure is a chronic disease that progresses with time if left untreated.

Lifestyle And Home Remedies

Congestive heart failure

Making lifestyle changes can often help relieve signs and symptoms of heart failure and prevent the disease from worsening. These changes may be among the most important and beneficial you can make. Lifestyle changes your doctor may recommend include:

  • Stop smoking. Smoking damages your blood vessels, raises blood pressure, reduces the amount of oxygen in your blood and makes your heart beat faster.

If you smoke, ask your doctor to recommend a program to help you quit. You cant be considered for a heart transplant if you continue to smoke. Avoid secondhand smoke, too.

  • Discuss weight monitoring with your doctor. Discuss with your doctor how often you should weigh yourself. Ask your doctor how much weight gain you should notify him or her about. Weight gain may mean that youre retaining fluids and need a change in your treatment plan.
  • Check your legs, ankles and feet for swelling daily. Check for any changes in swelling in your legs, ankles or feet daily. Check with your doctor if the swelling worsens.
  • Eat a healthy diet. Aim to eat a diet that includes fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fat-free or low-fat dairy products, and lean proteins.
  • Restrict salt in your diet. Too much sodium contributes to water retention, which makes your heart work harder and causes shortness of breath and swollen legs, ankles and feet.

If you have severe heart failure, your doctor may also suggest you limit the amount of fluids you drink.

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What Does Congestive Heart Failure Do To Your Body

Congestive heart failure can cause:

  • Shortness of breath: This happens when fluid collects in your lungs. It’s also called pulmonary edema. It may be worse when you’re lying down or when you’re active. If you’re having a hard time breathing, call your doctor or 911 right away.
  • Coughing: Like shortness of breath, this is usually caused by extra fluid in your lungs.
  • Tiredness: With heart failure, your body doesn’t pump out enough blood to keep your cells healthy. That can make you tired. You might find it hard to do everyday things like climb stairs.
  • Swelling : This happens when there’s too much fluid in your tissues. Your legs and ankles are the most likely places to swell. But other areas of your body, like your arms or belly, can also swell.
  • Weight gain: This is caused by extra fluid that doesn’t get flushed from your body the way it should.
  • A need to pee more often.

Angiotensin Ii Receptor Blockers

These drugs work similarly to ACE inhibitors, but dry cough side effects are less severe.

Drugs in this class include Diovan and Cozaar . Like ACE inhibitors, these drugs may damage kidneys so tests for kidney functions are recommended. Common side effects include dizziness, changes in kidney function and increased potassium levels.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Congestive Heart Failure

Daniel Louis Jacoby, MD, director of Yale Medicines General Heart Failure Programand the Cardiomyopathy Inherited Cardiovascular Disease Program, says that symptoms may be mild or severe and may not always be noticeable.

Most commonly, though, a patient may experience shortness of breath, fatigue, problems with the hearts rhythm called arrhythmias, and edemaor fluid buildupin the legs, he says.

Senior Independent Living: Basic Home Care Service

Congestive Heart Failure – What is CHF?

If you are an older adult with congestive heart failure, Centric Healthcare offers services that will help you to follow your treatment plan, manage your medications and make all dietary and lifestyle changes while you continue to live at home. We can provide the extra medical attention you need in the comfort and privacy of your own space. Were also able to provide assistance with tasks that you may no longer be able to do on your own. We can help you keep up with things around the house, allowing you to focus on getting healthy and feeling better.

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What Causes Heart Failure

Heart failure is caused by many conditions that damage the heart muscle, including:

  • Coronary artery disease.Coronary artery disease , a disease of the arteries that supply blood and oxygen to the heart, causes decreased blood flow to the heart muscle. If the arteries become blocked or severely narrowed, the heart becomes starved for oxygen and nutrients.
  • Heart attack. A heart attack happens when a coronary artery becomes suddenly blocked, stopping the flow of blood to the heart muscle. A heart attack damages the heart muscle, resulting in a scarred area that doesnât work the way it should.
  • Cardiomyopathy. Damage to the heart muscle from causes other than artery or blood flow problems, such as from infections or alcohol or drug abuse.
  • Conditions that overwork the heart. Conditions including high blood pressure, valve disease, thyroid disease, kidney disease, diabetes, or heart defects present at birth can all cause heart failure. In addition, heart failure can happen when several diseases or conditions are present at once.

What Are The 2 Types Of Congestive Heart Failure

There are two kinds of left-sided heart failure:

  • Systolic heart failure occurs when the left ventricle fails to contract normally. This reduces the level of force available to push blood into circulation.
  • Diastolic failure, or diastolic dysfunction, happens when the muscle in the left ventricle becomes stiff.

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Congestive Heart Failure Life Expectancy

Your life expectancy after receiving a diagnosis of congestive heart failure will depend upon several factors. Among them:

  • The current stage of progression of your heart failure

  • The underlying causes of your heart failure

  • The degree to which other organs are involved with your heart failure

  • The way your body responds to treatment

  • Although a diagnosis of congestive heart failure will probably mean major life changes and treatment for the rest of your life, it is important to keep in mind that there are things you can do to stay healthier longer and maximize the quality of your life.

    Classes Of Congestive Heart Failure

    Congestive Heart Failure (CHF): Symptoms, Stages, Life ...

    There are several ways that CHF has been classified. healthcare providers usually identify each stage of heart failure according to the severity of symptoms.

    The New York Heart Association Functional Classification defines class I through IV based on limitations in physical functioning.

    The categories are outlined below.

    Classes of Heart Failure
    Class I No limitation of physical activity. Ordinary physical activity does not cause undue fatigue, palpitation, dyspnea .
    Class II Slight limitation of physical activity. Comfortable at rest. Ordinary physical activity results in fatigue, palpitation, dyspnea .
    Class III
    Class IV Unable to carry on any physical activity without discomfort. Symptoms of heart failure at rest. If any physical activity is undertaken, discomfort increases.

    Heart failure generally worsens, and it is not possible to reverse it or go to a less advanced stage. Treatment can help prevent progression.

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    What Are The Stages Of Congestive Heart Failure

    The New York Heart Association has developed a scale that commonly is used to determine the functional capabilities of heart failure.

    New York Heart Association Functional Classification of Heart Failure

  • Class I: Patients without limitation of physical activity.
  • Class II: Patients with slight limitation of physical capacity, in which marked increase in physical activity leads to fatigue, palpitations, dyspnea, or anginapain they are comfortable at rest.
  • Class III: Patients with marked limitation of physical activity in which minimal ordinary activity results in fatigue, palpitation, dyspnea, or angina pain they are comfortable at rest.
  • Class IV: Patients who are not only unable to carry on any physical activity without discomfort but who also have symptoms of heart failure or the angina syndrome even at rest the patient’s discomfort increases if any physical activity is undertaken.
  • Know When To Seek Help

    Watch for signs that heart failure is getting worse, such as new or worsening . Weight gain, ankle swelling, or increasing shortness of breath may mean that fluids are building up in your body. Ask your doctor how often you should check your weight and when to report weight changes.

    Your symptoms may suddenly get worse. Ask your doctor when to make an office visit or get emergency care. Keep the following handy:

    • Phone numbers for your doctor, the hospital, and someone who can take you for medical care
    • Directions to the doctor’s office and hospital
    • A list of all the medicines youre taking

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    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.

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