Heart disease

Heart Muscle Disease

Heart Muscle Disease is a progressive disease in which the heart becomes thick, stiff, and enlarged. The heart muscles become weak and do not pump blood adequately to other body parts. It affects the heart muscle called the myocardium. This disease is called ‘cardiomyopathy,’ which can lead to severe problems such as heart attack and heart failure.

Inflammation of Heart Muscles:

It is also known as myocarditis, in which the heart does not pump blood properly due to inflammation. It causes chest pain, breathing issues, and problems with heart rhythms. Moreover, it causes the weakness of heart muscles and clotting in blood vessels. It is mainly caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, drugs, chemicals, radiations, and inflammatory diseases.

Types of heart muscle disease: Following are the types of heart muscle disease:

  • Dilated heart muscle disease: It causes the heart chamber to become thin and expand, mainly occurring in the heart’s left ventricle.
  • Hypertrophic: It is a disease in which the heart muscles become thick and cannot pump blood. Abnormal genes in the heart muscles mainly cause it.
  • Restrictive: In this disease, the muscle tissues become stiff and cause blood flow reduction in the heart. It mainly occurs in older age.
  • Peripartum: In this case, the heart muscles become weak and enlarge. It mainly occurs in the last month of pregnancy.

Causes of Heart Muscle Disease: The most common causes of heart muscle disease are as follows:

  • Ischemic heart muscle disease
  • Non-ischemic heart muscle disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Sarcoidosis and hemochromatosis
  • Thyroid disease
  • Diabetes
  • Genetic occurrence of heart diseases
  • Pregnancy complications
  • High blood pressure
  • Inflammation of the heart
  • Infections of coronavirus.
  • Obesity
  • Hemochromatosis in heart muscles
  • Granulomas (tiny inflammatory cells)
  • Sarcoidosis in the heart and lungs
  • Alcohol use
  • Cocaine and steroids
  • Medicines of chemotherapy and cancers
  • Lack of vitamins and minerals like vitamin B-1

Symptoms of Heart Muscle Disease: The symptoms of heart muscle disease are as follows:

  • Fatigue
  • Increased heartbeat rate
  • Discomfort and pressure on the chest
  • Feeling of dizziness
  • Lightheadedness and fainting
  • Leg swelling
  • Abdomen bloating due to buildup of fluids
  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing while lying down
  • Heart palpitations
  • Pain in chest
  • High blood pressure
  • Feeling of weakness

Risk factors for Heart Muscle Disease: Following are the risk factors for heart muscle diseases:

  • Sudden cardiac problem and failure of the heart
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Long-term high blood pressure
  • Heart damage
  • Inflammation of the heart
  • Disorders of heart valve
  • Obesity
  • Thyroid, diabetes, and amyloidosis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Hemochromatosis
  • Disorders of connective tissue
  • Infections of coronavirus
  • Long-term use of cocaine and amphetamines
  • Toxins like poison or heavy drugs

Diagnosis:

The doctor will perform a physical examination to diagnose heart muscle diseases and ask specific questions about your symptoms. If your cardiologist suspects that you have cardiomyopathy, he will recommend the following tests:

  • Chest X-ray: It shows a clear image of the chest to determine whether the heart condition is enlarged, stiff, weak, or not.
  • Electrocardiogram: It is a painless test used to check the heart’s valves and helps to determine the symptoms of heart muscle disease.
  • Echocardiogram: This test is used to identify how well the heart pumps the blood. Sound waves are used to develop images of the heartbeat.
  • CT scan or MRI scan: If the infection spreads to other body areas, the doctor will suggest a CT scan or MRI test of your chest. This test uses magnetic fields and radio waves to create heart images.
  • Cardiac catheterization: It is a test in which a thin, flexible tube is ingested into the patient’s blood vessel to diagnose and treat heart disorders. The device shows a clear image of the heart and reveals the blockages in blood vessels.
  • Treadmill stress test: This test monitors heart rhythms, blood pressure, and breathing quality during walking on the treadmill. It shows which exercise should trigger the symptoms and heart rhythms.
  • Blood tests: Different blood tests are done to examine kidney, thyroid, and liver conditions. It also measures cholesterol, iron, and vitamin levels.
  • Genetic testing: This disease can be inherited from the family, like parents, children, and siblings. Therefore, genetic testing is required to diagnose the cause.

Preventions for Heart Muscle Disease: To prevent heart muscle disease, the following measures can be taken:

  • Avoid alcohol, cocaine, and drugs.
  • Control high cholesterol.
  • Maintain normal blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Take enough sleep.
  • Reduce stress.

Treatment of heart muscle disease: Following treatment options can be used for heart muscle disease:

  • By maintaining a healthy lifestyle:
  • Try to avoid smoking and drugs.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Take a nutritious diet, and balance your nutrition, vitamins, etc.
  • Manage your stress.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Medications: You must take medicines to control and prevent;
  • High blood pressure
  • Water retention.
  • Heart rhythms.
  • Blood clotting
  • Surgery:
  • Implantable cardioverter defibrillators monitor heart rhythms and deliver electric shocks to manage them.
  • A ventricular assist device helps blood flow towards the heart.
  • A pacemaker is placed below the chest skin or abdomen to control arrhythmias.
  • Heart transplant: Doctors suggest heart transplants for patients with end-stage heart failure because medications, therapies, and other treatments no longer work for them.

References:

  • https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cardiomyopathy/symptoms-causes/syc-20370709#:~:text=Overview,dilated%2C%20hypertrophic%20and%20restrictive%20cardiomyopathy.

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/16841-cardiomyopathy

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