Heart failure is caused when certain health conditions weaken or damage the heart muscles. When the heart muscles get weak, the ventricles start stretching and they reach a point when they are unable to pump blood efficiently throughout the body. Sometimes, the ventricles become stiff and do not fill up properly between beats, which also obstructs their efficiency. Heart failure typically begins on the left side, specifically in the left ventricle, which is the main pumping chamber of the heart.

Treatment is aimed at improving your symptoms and helping your weakened or damaged heart work as efficiently as possible. Treatment methods may include a combination of Opioid Detox medications, surgery, medical devices and lifestyle changes.

Surgery Options

There are several different types of surgeries that can be performed. These include:

• Heart valve repair or replacement is recommended when there is an underlying condition that needs to be treated.
• Coronary bypass surgery is performed if the disease has resulted from severely constricted coronary arteries that obstruct the blood flow from the heart.
• Heart transplant surgery is performed on an individual who has severe congestive heart failure.
• Myectomy is done in an attempt to reduce the obstruction caused by an overgrown septal muscle in the heart.

Using Medications as Treatment

In the case of heart failure, medications are prescribed to help alleviate the symptoms and also to help improve circulation, prevent blocked arteries and to lower blood pressure. Blood thinners are sometimes prescribed to prevent blood clots.

Some of the medications commonly used include:
• Beta blockers: These lower blood pressure, slow down the heart rate and reduce the risk of irregular heart rhythms.
• ACE: (Angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors: Boost blood flow, lower blood pressure and decrease the heart’s overall work load.
• Aldosterone antagonists: These help boost the heart’s efficiency and reverse scarring of the heart.
• Digoxin: Also known as digitalis, this slows down the heartbeat and increases the strength of the heart’s contractions.
• Inotropes: Used in severe cases, these intravenous medications are used to regulate blood pressure and to improve heart pumping action.
• Diuretics: These prevent collection of fluid in the body and make breathing easier by decreasing fluid in the lungs

Medical Devices Uses as Treatment

• Ventricular Assist Devices or VADs are essentially mechanical heart pumps that are implanted into the abdomen and attached to the heart to help the weakened heart to pump blood efficiently.
• A Cardiac Resynchronization therapy (CRT) device works by sending regularly timed electrical impulses to the lower chambers of the heart and are suitable for moderate to severe cases.
• An Internal Defibrillator (ICD) is implanted under the skin and works by sending electrical signals to the heart when it detects an irregular or high rhythm. These electrical signals shock the heart into breathing more slowly and pumping more efficiently.

Lifestyle Changes

Lifestyle changes are the key to relieving symptoms of congestive heart failure and preventing the disease from getting worse. Regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight are two of the most important heart-healthy lifestyle changes that any one can make. Some of the other changes include reducing stress and avoiding or limiting alcohol, smoking and caffeine in addition to maintaining a healthy diet that is low in fat and sodium.


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