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Heart & Vascular

Baylor Medical Center at Garland

 
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Congestive Heart Failure 

What Is Congestive Heart Failure?

Heart failure is caused when the heart muscle becomes weak and can not pump blood efficiently through the body, which means the body does not get the blood it needs and causes the abdomen, legs and lungs to fill up with fluid. 

Heart failure is caused by coronary artery disease, heart attacks, high blood pressure, abnormal heart rhythm, alcohol or drug abuse, serious viral infections, chemotherapy, congenital heart defects, abnormal heart valves, severe lung disease, and heart muscle disease. 

Common symptoms of heart failure include: 

  • shortness of breath
  • chest pain
  • increasing tiredness
  • swelling in the legs
  • rapid weight gain (3 pounds in 3 days)
  • decreased appetite or nausea
  • cough/congestion
  • decreased urine output
  • abdominal distention and bloating  

When to Get Help         

Call 911 if you have:

  • Severe chest pain
  • Fainting spell
  • Rapid and/or irregular heartbeat

 Call your physician if you have:

  • Any questions
  • Gained or lost 3 pounds in 3 days
  • New or your symptoms are worse

CHF is a serious condition, but there are things you can do to help prevent or manage the disease such as eating right, lowering your salt intake, weighing yourself daily to check for sudden gains, consistently taking medication your physician may prescribe and, of course, not smoking.

For more information please call the Health Management Center at 972.485.2336.