What is it?
A condition in which the heart is unable to pump a large enough volume of oxygenated blood to meet the metabolic needs of the body, congestive heart failure can be caused by weakness or stiffening of the heart muscle resulting from infection, previous heart disease, or longstanding illness such as hypertension. Congestive heart failure can have far reaching effects in many systems of the body, including the kidneys and lungs.
• Earliest symptom may be fatigue
• Swelling of the feet and ankles
• May need to sleep in an upright position
• Exercise may be difficult or impossible
• Abdominal pain or nausea
• Decreased appetite
• Increased urination, especially at night
How do we treat it?
While some of the damage related to congestive heart failure (CHF) are irreversible, other aspects of the condition are treatable. This multi-system problem requires a multi-system approach including increasing the function of your heart muscle, optimizing filtration in your kidneys and supporting lung function while also maximizing oxygen circulation to your body and brain. But, in addition, usually a specific health event triggered this loss of heart function and we must carefully consider the reasons why this condition developed. Was there a metaphoric heart break? Did chronic inflammation precipitate arterial plaques and damage to the heart muscle? Is there a genetic predisposition to heart problems? Your plan will consist of dietary guidelines as well as supplements and remedies to improve the contractility of your heart and systemic circulation. And, we will try to understand the meaning of this serious illness in the context of your life.