What Is Congestive Heart Failure?

Monday, 06 Jun 2011 05:05 PM

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Heart problems are a major cause of hospitalization these days, and congestive heart failure is the most common of these problems. In the U.S., heart problems are the number one cause of death and disability.

The heart is like a pump which, along with the lungs, propels blood to every organ in the body, thus ensuring the normal functioning of every system.

When this pumping action is hampered due to certain conditions, it is known as heart failure or congestive heart failure (CHF). Coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, anemia, and hyperthyroidism are some of the conditions which may cause congestive heart failure. In these conditions, the heart muscles become too weak or too stiff to adequately pump blood to the distant organs of the body.

Congestive heart failures are classified as systolic and diastolic heart failure. When the heart muscles become weak, some organs may not adequately receive blood. This condition is known as systolic congestive heart failure. Diastolic congestive heart failure occurs when the heart is able to contract but its muscles are stiff. The two types of congestive heart failure are further classified as either right-sided or left-sided depending upon the side of the heart which is affected.

For more information on congestive heart failure, see below:

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