What Are the Symptoms of Heart Failure

What Are the Symptoms of Heart Failure?

• Shortness of breath

• Fatigue

• Coughing

• Leg, ankle, and foot edema

• Nausea, vomiting, and lack of appetite

• Memory decline and feeling mentally foggy

• Fast and irregular heartbeat

• Abdominal edema

Heart failure is caused by enlarged cardiac muscles in the left ventricle and stiffness of the ventricular walls, making the heart unable to contract and relax properly. Contraction pumps the blood out of the heart, while relaxation allows the blood to return to the heart. Enlarged and hardened ventricles weaken the heart, and the weakened heart has to work harder to supply blood to the rest of the body. Exhaustive contraction and relaxation cycles further enlarge cardiac muscles, leading to heart failure. In the US, 5 million people are afflicted with heart failure.

Heart failure can be divided into four types:

• Left-side heart failure. Shortness of breath and pulmonary edema

• Right-side heart failure. Abdominal and leg edema

• Contracting-stage heart failure. Weakness in left ventricular contraction

• Relaxing-stage heart failure. Weakness in left ventricular relaxation

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