Your cardiovascular system is made up of the heart and the blood vessels that transport blood all throughout your body. The heart, which is a large fist-sized muscle, is the core of your cardiovascular system. Located leftward in your chest, the heart works as a pump for the blood,
Congestive heart failures (CHF) is an often progressive long-term condition that develops when the heart pumps insufficient blood for the body. Coronary artery disease and high blood pressure are the most common causes of CHF. Many types of CHF are controllable with medications, lifestyle changes, and treatment of other medical conditions. Severe cases of CHF may necessitate implanted devices like a heart transplant or pacemaker.
Your cardiovascular system is made up of the heart and the blood vessels that transport blood all throughout your body. The heart, which is a large fist-sized muscle, is the core of your cardiovascular system. Located leftward in your chest, the heart works as a pump for the blood, which delivers oxygen and nutrients to your body’s cells while carrying away waste products.
A thick wall, called the septum, divides your heart into four sections called chambers. The upper two chambers, called atria, receive incoming blood to the heart, while the bottom chambers, called ventricles, send blood outward from the heart.
Your heart manages dual pumping systems with one on the left side and one on the right side. The left side’s system comprises the left ventricle and left atrium. When you breathe in, your lungs infuse your blood with new oxygen. Your left atrium receives this newly oxygenated blood and moves it to the left ventricle, which sends it out from your heart to circulate all through the rest of your body.
The right side’s pumping system is composed of the right ventricle and right atrium. Deoxygenated blood that has finished circulating throughout the body comes back to the right atrium, which then sends it to the right ventricle. The blood is then sent by the right ventricle to the lungs, where it will receive a fresh supply of oxygen when you inhale.
Four valves prevent blood from flowing backward as it travels through the chambers of the heart. The tricuspid and mitral valves control flow from the atria to the ventricles, while the pulmonary and aortic valves regulate blood as it departs the ventricles.
If healthy, a heart will have a steady rhythm and produce a “lub-dub” sound whenever it beats. The closing of the mitral and tricuspid vales create the first sound in your heartbeat. The second sound comes from the aortic and pulmonary valves closing after blood leaves your heart.
Blood vessels that send oxygenated blood outward from the heart are called arteries. Of all the blood vessels in your body, the aorta is the largest. The left ventricle is separated from the aorta by the aortic valve. Coronary arteries branch off from the aorta to keep the heart supplied with nutrients and oxygen-rich blood to keep it healthy. Deoxygenated blood from the right ventricle is carried to the lungs by the pulmonary artery.
Vessels that deliver used blood from your lungs and body back to the heart are called veins. The two largest veins in your body are the superior and inferior vena cavae, which are located below and above your heart.
Your heart is surrounded by large veins and arteries, which branch out and become tinier as they travel throughout your body. Arteries and veins are connected by small capillaries, which deliver nutrients and oxygen while removing waste products like carbon dioxide.
Congestive heart failure develops when the heart fails to pump adequate blood to supply the body. Rather than being pumped forward, your blood may flow back and accumulate in areas of the body like the arms, legs, lungs, and gastrointestinal tract. Vital organs may fail to function due to inadequate blood supply. CHF is usually a long-term, chronic condition that affects both sides or either side of the heart. Sometimes, CHF develops very suddenly.
The most frequent causes of CHF are coronary artery disease and high blood pressure. It can also be caused by arrhythmia, lung disease, heart tumors, and structural abnormalities associated with dilated cardiomyopathy, congenital heart disease, and heart valve disease.
Congestive heart failure can result in weight gain, shortness of breath after activities or lying flat, protruding neck veins, swollen legs, arms, and abdomen, indigestion, nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, faintness, fatigue, weakness, and irregular or rapid pulse. You may experience difficulty concentrating, remembering, remaining alert, and sleeping. You may sweat, cough, or suddenly gasp for breath, particularly at nighttime. You may experience less urine than usual while urinating more often at night.
In some cases, people with CHF experience no symptoms. They may experience symptoms after developing anemia, kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, high fever, and arrhythmias. Babies may sweat during feeding and other exertions.
Consult with your doctor regarding your symptoms. Your doctor will check for abnormal heart rhythms or sounds by listening to your heart and lungs. Your doctor will examine the veins in your neck as well as your liver for enlargement. Your doctor will gain more information about how your circulatory system, kidneys, heart, and liver are functioning through blood and urine lab tests. Your doctor may evaluate your heart using several tests, including a coronary angiography, echocardiogram, electrocardiogram (ECG), and nuclear ventriculography.
After an exam and evaluative tests, your doctor can classify which type of congestive heart failure you have. Many types of CHF are controllable with medications, lifestyle changes, and treatment of causal medical conditions. Treatment is focused on preventing the disease’s progression and relieving symptoms. Your doctor can treat reversible causes such as high blood pressure, infection, or anemia.
Keep your heart healthy with several lifestyle changes, including not smoking, eating healthy foods, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, and avoiding excessive alcohol consumption. Your doctor may also suggest that you reduce your fluid and salt intake. There are several medications that are prescribed for congestive heart failure. Avoid potential medical complications by diligently attending follow-up care, which is necessary to monitor your treatments and condition.
Sudden experiences of CHF may necessitate hospitalization, medications, or special procedures. Doctors may remove fluid from the sac that surrounds your heart or remove excess body fluid with dialysis. Some people may need pacemakers, implanted pumps, or defibrillators to help their hearts function. Select patients need heart transplant surgery.
You can reverse the treatable risk factors of CHF, such as blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. Avoid alcohol, smoking, and drugs. Maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly. Ask your doctor about whether you should decrease your salt and fluid intake.
If you have been diagnosed with congestive heart failure, carefully follow your doctor’s instructions by attending all your appointments, taking all your medications as directed, and participating in your cardiac rehabilitation program.
Am I At Risk
Risk factors that increase your chances of experiencing CHF include diabetes, smoking, alcohol abuse, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, aging, heart disease/heart attack, family history of CHF, and being overweight.
Congestive heart failure is a progressive disease that reduces life expectancy and even cause death. Infections and other medical disorders may worsen CHF. Complications include kidney problems, fluid buildup in the lungs, and abnormal heart rhythms.
Researchers are continuing to improve transplant methods, defibrillators, pumps, and implanted heart pacemakers, as well as experimenting with artificial hearts. Researchers are also identifying prevention strategies by evaluating trends among people that suffer CHF.