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Right-Sided Heart Failure – Condition and Treatment

Right-sided heart failure is a condition in which the right side of the heart loses its ability to pump blood efficiently. Right-sided heart failure is a condition in which the right side of the heart loses its ability to pump blood efficiently.

What happens to the heart?

Most people develop heart failure because of a problem with the left ventricle. But reduced function of the right ventricle can also occur in heart failure. As blood begins to back up behind the failing left ventricle and into the lungs, it will become increasingly difficult for the right ventricle to pump blood through the lungs, back to the left ventricle. Like the left ventricle, the right ventricle will eventually weaken and begin to fail.

Overview

Right-sided heart failure occurs in about 1 in 20 people. Coronary artery disease is the most common cause of heart failure, but it can be a complication of other conditions. Right-side heart failure may cause fluid to build up in the feet, ankles, legs, liver, abdomen, and the veins in the neck. Right-side and left-side heart failure also may cause shortness of breath and fatigue (tiredness). Heart failure may affect the right side of the heart (right ventricle), the left side (left ventricle), or both sides. In right-sided heart failure, the right ventricle loses its pumping function, and blood may back up into other areas of the body, producing congestion. Congestion affects the liver, the gastrointestinal tract, and the limbs. In addition, the right ventricle may be unable to pump blood efficiently to the lungs and to the left ventricle.

Causes

Causes of right-sided heart failure include:

  • Left-sided heart failure (a life-threatening condition in which the left side of the heart cannot pump enough blood to the body) and
  • Lung diseases, such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
  • Congenital heart disease,
  • Clots in pulmonary arteries,
  • Pulmonary hypertension (abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs. It makes the right side of the heart work harder than normal), and
  • Heart valve disease.

The leading causes of heart failure are diseases that damage the heart. Examples include coronary heart disease (CHD), high blood pressure, and diabetes.

Symptoms

  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling of feet and ankles
  • Urinating more frequently at night
  • Pronounced neck veins
  • Palpitations (sensation of feeling the heartbeat)
  • Irregular, fast heartbeat
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Fainting

Triggers

A variety of different situations may trigger an episode of heart failure, including:

  • Increased intake of fluids or salt
  • Fever
  • Infections
  • Anemia
  • Blockage in the coronary arteries
  • Irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias)
  • Overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism)
  • Kidney disease

Many people admitted to the hospital with heart failure do not follow a recommended low-salt diet or take heart failure medicines as prescribed.

Treatment

Heart failure requires periodic monitoring by your health care provider. The goals of treatment include controlling the symptoms, reducing the heart’s workload, and improving your heart’s ability to function. Any underlying disorders and causes should be treated, if possible. The most common therapy for right-sided heart failure is treating left-sided heart failure, including medical, etc…Valve replacements and procedures such as bypass surgery (CABG) and angioplasty may help some people.

Lifestyle

Generally, you must reduce the salt in your food and the amount of liquids you drink. You should also consider losing weight if you are overweight, stopping smoking, and avoiding too much alcohol.

Outlook (Prognosis)

Heart failure is a serious disorder. Everything possible should be done to prevent the heart’s pumping problems from getting worse. There is no cure, but many forms of heart failure can be controlled with medication, addressing the underlying disorders, and using implanted devices with defibrillation capabilities.

Why Shouldn’t You Use AirPhysio for Right-sided Heart Failure?

If the case of Right-sided heart failure, because the condition is usually due to strained and injured heart muscles, any excess strain to the lungs and breathing, also created further aggravation to the heart muscles which may cause further heart problems.

For more information about Right-Sided Heart Failureplease refer to the following web pages and articles:

What Is Right-side Heart Failure?
7 Habits for a Healthy Heart
Heart Failure
Right Ventricular Function and Failure

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