heart failure


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Related to heart failure: congestive heart failure

heart failure

1. a condition in which the heart is unable to pump an adequate amount of blood to the tissues, usually resulting in breathlessness, swollen ankles, etc.
2. sudden and permanent cessation of the heartbeat, resulting in death

Heart Failure

 

(cardiac insufficiency), a combination of disorders caused primarily by a reduction in cardiac contractility. Heart failure may occur if the heart is overstrained as a result of arterial hypertension or heart disease or if the blood supply to the heart is interrupted (myocardial infarction). Toxic influences, such as those produced during Graves’ disease, and myocarditis may also cause heart failure.

Heart failure is accompanied by congestion, because the weakened cardiac muscle cannot handle circulation. Left ventricular heart failure results in pulmonary congestion accompanied by dyspnea, cyanosis, and hemoptysis, whereas right ventricular heart failure results in passive congestion of systemic circulation marked by the development of edemas and the enlargement of the liver. Heart failure results in hypoxia of the organs and tissues, acidosis, and other metabolic disorders. Acute heart failure usually occurs in the left ventricle and is manifested by an attack of cardiac asthma.

Heart failure is treated with cardiac glycosides, diuretics, and antiarrhythmics. Surgery, for example, the implantation of a pacemaker, may be performed in certain cases.

heart failure

[′härt ‚fāl·yər]
(medicine)
References in periodicals archive ?
One in five people aged over 40 will develop heart failure in their lifetime, and patient numbers are increasing.
To date, researchers have focused on systolic heart failure, believing that the majority of heart failure patients--up to 70 percent--suffer from this form of the disease.
The inflammatory protein called tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF) may play a lead role in congestive heart failure.
The term congestive heart failure is often used to describe all patients with heart failure.
That's why Yusuf's team is now testing enalapril's ability to prevent chronic heart failure in people with some damage to the heart but not symptoms of long-term heart failure.

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