Types Of Heart Disease


Many people think of heart disease as an illness that one gets later in life or is brought on by poor lifestyle choices. However, heart disease can happen to anyone, regardless of how young or old they are and regardless of their current health conditions. Recognizing the signs and symptoms early often makes the difference between rapid death or complete recovery. This article discusses some of the most common types of heart disease that may need you to visit heart disease specialists at Life Imaging Fla. Read on to learn more.

1. Endocarditis

This condition occurs when the heart valves are not working correctly. A bacterial or fungal infection can cause endocarditis, but sometimes it results from normal wear and tear. When this happens, bacteria present in the bloodstream can form small clumps on top of damaged areas of the heart. These clumps are called vegetations. During endocarditis, the immune system attacks the vegetations, which causes inflammation of the heart walls. When this occurs, symptoms include fever and chills, fatigue, shortness of breath, pain in the abdomen or chest area, weight loss, and more. ECGs can diagnose this condition, while TEEs are used to visualize the situation inside the heart.

2. Arrhythmia

Arrhythmias are problems with heartbeat rhythm and conduction of electrical signals throughout the body. Most of the time, these rhythms are regular and feel like a fluttering sensation in your chest called palpitations. However, there are some cases where a person’s heart may not beat fast enough or may sometimes be too fast to pump blood properly. Heart disease specialists can diagnose arrhythmias using an ECG.

3. Cardiomyopathy

Cardiomyopathy is a condition that causes the heart muscles to become weak and enlarged, which makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood around the body. There are various types of cardiomyopathy, such as hypertrophic, dilated, and restrictive cardiomyopathy. Symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, chest pain, and edema (swelling in the feet). Cardiomyopathy is usually diagnosed with an ECG and echocardiogram.

4. Pericarditis

This condition occurs when the pericardium (the sac that surrounds the heart) becomes inflamed. It is usually caused by an infection, such as a respiratory tract infection (common cold), but it can also be caused by alcohol consumption and certain medications. Symptoms include chest pain which may spread to the lower jaw, neck, and shoulders, fever, cough, nausea, and vomiting.

5. Structural Heart Disease

This type of heart disease results from structural problems in either the chambers or valves of your heart. Congenital heart conditions can cause this at birth, abnormal growths in the heart, viral infections, and certain autoimmune diseases. Symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, and chest pain. Structural heart disease is usually diagnosed with an ECG and echocardiogram.

In summary, heart disease can affect anyone, so it is vital to be aware of the risks and symptoms. Some of the most common types of heart disease include endocarditis, arrhythmias, cardiomyopathy, and structural heart disease. Patients must have regular checkups with heart disease specialists to catch any abnormalities early enough to prevent life-threatening complications.

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