Heart failure happens when the heart cannot pump enough blood and oxygen to support other organs in your body. Heart failure is a serious condition, but it does not mean that the heart has stopped beating.
Common symptoms of heart failure include:
- Shortness of breath during daily activities
- Having trouble breathing when lying down
- Weight gain with swelling in the feet, legs, ankles, or stomach
- Generally feeling tired or weak
Heart failure is a serious condition, but it does not mean that the heart has stopped beating.
What are the risk factors for heart failure?
Certain medical conditions can increase your risk for heart failure, including
- Coronary artery disease (CAD)
- High blood pressure
- Valvar heart disease
- Other heart related health conditions
Unhealthy behaviors can also increase your risk for heart failure, especially for people who have one of the conditions listed above. Unhealthy behaviors include:
- Eating foods high in fat, cholesterol, and sodium
- Not getting enough physical activity
- Excessive alcohol intake
Early diagnosis and treatment can improve quality and length of life for people who have heart failure. Treatment usually involves the following:
- Taking medicines
- Reducing sodium in the diet
- Drinking less liquids
- Devices that remove excess salt and water from the blood
- Heart transplant and other surgeries
- Getting daily physical activity