What is Heart Failure?

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The American Heart Association says the term "heart failure" makes it sound like the heart is no longer working at all and there's nothing that can be done. Actually, heart failure means that the heart isn't pumping as well as it should be.

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Your body depends on the heart's pumping action to deliver oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood to the body's cells. When the cells are nourished properly, the body can function normally.

With heart failure, the weakened heart can't supply the cells with enough blood. This results in fatigue and shortness of breath and some people have coughing. Everyday activities such as walking, climbing stairs or carrying groceries can become very difficult.

Heart failure is a serious condition, and usually there's no cure. But many people with heart failure lead a full, enjoyable life when the condition is managed with heart failure medications and healthy lifestyle changes. It's also helpful to have the support of family and friends who understand your condition.

*source: Recognizing Advanced Heart Failure and Knowing Your Options

Signs & Symptoms of Heart Failure

  • Shortness of Breath
  • Chronic shortness of Breath
  • Buildup of Excess Fluid
  • Fatigue or Being Tired
  • Lack of Appetite or Nausea
  • Confusion or Impaired Thinking
  • High Heart Rate

Advanced Certified Heart Failure Center

Largo Medical Center has been certified by the Joint Commission. This certification means that our program complies with national standardized performance measures while participating in the American Heart Association's Get With The Guidelines - Heart Failure quality improvement program at an award-winning level of performance.

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