What is Heart Failure?
One of the most common heart conditions is heart failure, which is also known as congestive heart failure. Heart failure means that for some reasons – they could be age, abuse, or damage – there exists a weakening of the heart and a decrease in the heart’s capability of pumping enough blood to meet the demand of your body. So, basically, heart failure means that your blood cannot supply enough blood for your body.
Heart failure can be systolic or diastolic. Both of these types are linked to certain impairments of the left lower chamber.
Signs or Symptoms of Heart Failure
Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath, or dyspnea, usually occurs when you participate activity, rest, or sleep. During sleeping, the symptom can appear abruptly and rouse you from sleep. You usually have trouble breathing when you lie flat; you may also have to put two pillows under the upper body and head. Moreover, you may find waking-up so tiring and feel tense and anxious.
This symptom occurs when the blood backs up in the pulmonary veins due to the heart’s inability to keep up with the supply, which may make fluid enter the lungs.
Your body is always filled with a feeling of tiredness, and daily activities such as cooking, walking, shopping become more difficult to complete.
This symptom is due in large part to the fact that the heart no longer supplies as much blood as your body tissues require. The body reduces the amount of blood to less important organs, especially muscles in the limbs, to deliver blood to the brain and heart.
Accumulation of Fluid in Body Tissues
This symptom is also called edema. You may experience weight gain or swelling in the abdomen, legs, ankles, and feet. Notice if your shoes become tight.
When the blood flow out of the heart is slowed, blood returning to the heart through the veins backs up, leading to the accumulation of excess fluid in the tissues. That the kidney’s weakened ability to get rid of sodium and water results in fluid retention in the tissues.
You may also experience other symptoms such as:
- Rapid heartbeat
- Persistent cough or wheezing
- Appetite loss
- Lightheadedness and dizziness
- Chest pain (if the heart failure is the result of a heart attack)
Treatment for Heart Failure
In order to treat heart failure, you need to make the heart’s ability to pump blood better. Furthermore, treating the symptoms is necessary as well. Make an appointment with your doctor for advice and further information, and remember to follow your medication as exactly prescribed by your doctor.
You should reduce the amount of salt and fluid in your diet, lose excess weight, participate regular exercise, cut alcohol and quit smoking.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Review Date: August 12, 2017 | Last Modified: August 12, 2017
Symptoms of Heart Failure. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-failure/basics/symptoms/con-20029801. Accessed August 9, 2017
Warning Signs of Heart Failure. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HeartFailure/WarningSignsforHeartFailure/Warning-Signs-of-Heart-Failure_UCM_002045_Article.jsp#.WYqZi1EjHIU. Accessed August 9, 2017
What is Heart Failure? – Everything You Need To Know. https://myheart.net/articles/what-is-heart-failure-everything-you-need-to-know/. Accessed August 9, 2017