How congestive heart failure affects many organs of the body:

Emobileclinic Trending Topic: Congestive Heart Failure

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) is a condition in which the heart’s function as a pump is inadequate to deliver oxygen rich blood to the body. Congestive Heart Failure can be caused by:

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Diseases that weaken; the heart muscle, stiffening of the heart muscles, increase oxygen demand by the body tissue beyond the capability of the heart to deliver adequate oxygen-rich blood

Symptoms and Signs

The symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure vary among individuals according to the particular organ systems involved and depending on the degree to which the rest of the body has compensated for the heart muscle weakness. The early symptoms are often shortness of breath, cough, or a feeling of not being able to get a deep breath, exercise intolerance, shortness of breath, fluid retention and swelling (edema in the legs, feet, and ankles)

How it affects many organs of the body:

The weakened heart muscles may not be able to supply enough blood to the kidneys, which then begin to lose their normal ability to excrete salt (sodium) and water.

Fluid may likewise accumulate in the liver, thereby impairing its ability to rid the body of toxins and produce essential proteins.

The intestines may become less efficient in absorbing nutrients and medicines.

Fluid also may accumulate in the extremities, resulting in edema (swelling) of the ankles and feet.

Causes Congestive Heart Failure

Many disease processes can impair the pumping efficiency of the heart to cause congestive heart failure, and the most common causes of congestive heart failure are:

Coronary Artery Disease

High blood pressure (Hypertension)

Longstanding alcohol abuse

Disorders of the heart valves

Less common causes include viral infections, thyroid disorders, disorders of the heart rhythm, and many others.

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of congestive heart failure is most often a clinical where the patient history will be taken, In addition, a history of significant coronary artery disease, prior heart attack, hypertension, diabetes, or significant alcohol use can be clues. The physical examination is to detect the presence of extra fluid in the body

Electrocardiogram (ECG) and chest X-ray to detect previous heart attacks, arrhythmia, heart enlargement, and fluid in and around the lungs.

Treatment of Congestive Heart Failure

Lifestyle modification is an important step in the treatment of the ailment because it may go a long way in prolonging the life of the patient. 

Fluid consumption to be regulated.  The popular saying rule “drinking eight glasses of water a day is healthy” certainly does not apply to patients with congestive heart failure.

Aerobic exercise, once discouraged for congestive heart failure patients, has been shown to be beneficial in maintaining overall functional capacity, quality of life, and perhaps even improving survival. 

Medications: the selection of medications available for the treatment of congestive heart failure was frustratingly limited and focused mainly on controlling the symptoms. Medications have now been developed that both improve symptoms, and importantly, prolong survival.

 

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