What Is Congestive Heart Failure?
Congestive heart failure, more commonly referred to as heart failure or CHF, is when the heart isn’t able to pump enough blood for the body’s organs. The heart will continue to work, however it does not work as efficient as it should. This means that someone with heart failure shouldn’t over work themselves because simply walking can cause them to become short of breath and tired.
There are numerous conditions that can cause congestive heart failure. Scar tissues from past heart attacks can interfere with the heart muscles. A narrowing of arteries that supplies blood to the heart muscles, also called coronary artery disease, can also cause heart failure. Other causes include infections, heart defects from birth, cardiomyopathy, diseases of the heart valve, and high blood pressure.
The first indicator of congestive heart failure is fatigue. Fatigue can be caused by many other conditions, making it hard to tell when congestive heart failure is the cause. When the body becomes overpowered by all the fluid from the heart failure, ankles, legs, or abdominal swelling can be noticed. If the fluid also accumulates in the lungs, shortness of breath can be the result. Excess fluid from the heart failure can cause increased urination as well as assimilate in the liver or intestines, causing nausea, pain in the abdomen, and loss of appetite.
Treatment for congestive heart failure starts with a proper diet. High blood pressure contributes to congestive heart failure and a proper diet can control this. Rest and modified daily activities are another alteration that can be made to your life to better suit congestive heart failure. Medications can also be given to help control congestive heart failure and treat the symptoms.