Sunday, November 21, 2010

What We Need To Know About Congestive Heart Disease


Known by many as congestive heart failure or CHF, it is a serious health condition that affects people of every gender and race. It is deemed by many as one of the leading causes of hospitalization in the United States and most of its victims are people above the age of 65. And, unlike the other types of heart disease that are becoming less common, the congestive heart disease is continually growing in a number of rates.

Such disease occurs when the heart losses its capability to pump blood properly. It is subsequently coupled with the accumulation of fluid in the heart and other organs of the body, particularly the lungs.

There are two main processes in the heart that contribute to the development of the disease. In one hand, the disease may appear as a result of an improper contraction of the heart, also known as pump failure. On the other hand, this illness may be due to the heart not relaxing completely. There are also some instances that the heart failure may be caused by a combination of both cases. Well, in either case, congestive heart disease is a condition that is potentially life-threatening. Several reports have in fact noted that people who are affected by it may die sooner and more often because of the condition.

It often appears with a number of varying signs and symptoms. This is also true among the other types of heart disease. Typically, in severe cases, swelling of the feet and legs, also known as edema, may appear. This symptom is coupled with difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath (dyspnea), weakness and fatigue. In most advanced cases, such illness can be felt with a difficulty breathing while lying on the back, also called orthopnea. It is further interesting to know that in certain periods of your disease, there will be instances that you will feel heart attacks that awaken you from sleep. This of course can be very scary, and this attack is often associated with wheezing, cardiac asthma and coughing.

It is important to note that the symptoms of congestive heart disease are said to occur because of certain causes. Numerous studies have it that the most potential causes of this health problem are hypertension, as well as a history of heart attacks. Both of these conditions are said to be potent for causing it as they alter the proper functioning of the heart, leaving the organ weak and incapable of pumping enough supply of blood to the heart. There are also some studies which noted that the condition can also be due to certain problems in the heart valves, heavy use of alcohol, and irregularities in the heart rhythm.

With the risk factors of congestive heart disease being identified, several treatments now emerge to back up the case. However, since the disease appears with varying symptoms and degrees of severity, it is best to talk to your doctor before opting for one of the available treatments. This is by far the most important move you can ever make.
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