You will be hearing allot about ‘heart failure’ (HF). No that does not mean a heart has a “F” score!  New drugs for this condition are everywhere from the financial news to medical journals. This blog aims to ‘wise u-up’ on this condition.

Background: The heart is a pump with 4 chambers (compartments). The heart can stop to work properly for a myriad of reasons, only one of which is coronary vessel disease (CAD). When you have a heart attack (MI) some heart muscle dies from lack of blood supply. This happens when either the coronary vessel become narrowed/plugged or the heart beat is skipping so much the coronary vessels cannot fill with blood. A significant decrease in pump efficiency (HF) can happen from muscle damage from other causes; viruses, cocaine, drugs, and untreated high blood pressure to name a few. Often called a ‘big heart’ since it dilates as muscle becomes flabby.

Stats: From the Heart Disease and Stroke Statistical Update of AHA

  • In 2010, 1 in 9 death certificates (279,098 deaths) in the United States mentioned heart failure.
  • Approximately 5.1 million Americans ?20 years of age have HF.
  • Heart failure accounts for 35% of cardiovascular disease deaths.
  • Prevalence of HF will increase 46% from 2012 to 2030, resulting in >8 million people ?18 years of age with HF.

Important: Self-care is a big part of living longer.

  • Depression is quite common
  • Exercise can improve oxygen flow.
  • Many interactions with OTC and supplements can occur,
  • Understanding the diet is crucial esp. low salt intake & alcohol restriction.