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Heart disease is described as “any pathological condition of the coronary arteries, heart valves, myocardium, or electrical conduction system of the heart.” Heart failure can occur in a many number of ways, it frequently happens after one or more conditions have weakened and or damaged the heart. When the heart can, no longer pump blood to the body in a normal fashion, the ventricles (chambers) do not fill up with enough blood to supply the lungs and the body system with oxygenated blood between heart beats.

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Heart failure most commonly starts in the left ventricle (which is the main pumping chamber) but it can also begin in the right or both sides.  When the blood flow’s retrograde back into the lungs, liver or abdomen it is called congestive heart failure.

Coronary artery disease which is the most common form of heart failure and disease, over a period of time the arteries that supply blood to the heart muscles become clogged with fatty deposits or “Plaque” that restricts the flow of blood a condition called atherosclerosis, a myocardial infarction occurs when plaque causes a rupture in the arteries.

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Hypertension: (High blood pressure), the force of blood pumped through the arteries by the heart, if the pressure is to high the heart has to work harder to carry blood to the body, in time your heart can become so weak that it can no longer carry blood to the entire body. Myocarditis, which is a inflammation can be caused by a virus and lead to left-sided heart failure.

 

Heart arrhythmia: which are abnormalities of the hearts beating rhythms that can cause the heart to beat fast and work too hard resulting in the weakening of heart and in time causing heart failure.  Myocardial infarction (heart failure) results in about 10%-20% of deaths from people suffering from this disease out of 400,000 diagnosed each year in the U.S. alone.

 

Coronary Pulmonale: a type of pulmonary blood flow obstruction, which is caused by lung disorders, is a type of right-sided heart failure that overloads the right side of the heart. My paternal aunt died from this form of heart disease many years ago, so I feel that everyone should be made aware of the causes and prevention of heart disease.

 

The ejection fraction which is the blood proportion in the hearts ventricles, that’s pumped from the heart occurring in each contraction. This ejection fraction is about between 55%-78% in healthy patients. The blood is ejected from the lower ventricles into the aorta and pulmonary artery to supply blood to the lungs and systemic circulation to the human body. The blood must travel to the lungs to become re-oxygenated.

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Various conditions can damage the heart’s conduction system such as heart attack or Endocarditis, and interrupt the electrical impulses, or signals that coordinate the heart’s muscle rhythmic beating. In essence the heart pumps blood through the body by means of the four chambers within the heart itself called the atrium and ventricles.

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By contracting using the bio-electro impulses created by structures located in the heart’s wall known as the sinoatrial node, also known as the “pacemaker”, the atrioventricular node, the bundle of his and Purkinje fibers. Any abnormalities of the heart rhythm, is called dysrhythmia.

Heart block is a form of dysrhythmia, in which the electrical impulses are blocked from getting to the ventricular myocardium (ventricle heart muscles) that results in AV node block, causing the ventricle chambers to contract a very slow rate, this condition is known as bradycardia.

“The American Heart Association reports that between 1999 and 2009, the rate of deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) declined 32.7 percent. However, CVD still accounts for about one in three deaths in the U.S. And the biggest barriers to continued reduction in CVD deaths appear to be the growing prevalence of obesity and diabetes.”

 

However there are ways to guard against heart disease. “Leslie Cho, MD, Director of Preventive Cardiology and Rehabilitation at Cleveland Clinic, and Editor-in-Chief of Heart Advisor” say’s: “The value of exercise and fitness can’t be overstated when it comes to heart health. And even if you’ve lived a rather sedentary life, your body will respond if you increase the amount of physical activity in your daily routine.”     

There are many factors that may lead to heart disease, such as being very over weight, smoking, unhealthy diet, being over stressed.  African Americans seem to be at a higher risk, other preventions include eating a well rounded diet and getting plenty of exercise which can reduce your chances of suffering from heart disease.

Also by limiting the amount of salt intake and drinking in moderation can also go along way help reduce your risk. Also by avoiding stress whenever possible and maintaining a healthy body weight.

It is important that everyone that’s good care of their heart and health so that they can live a long and productive life for many years to come. Dr. Leslie Cho, also states that “the details of the diet are less important than it be one that is low in saturated fats, low in sodium and small in portion size.”

“A lot of people eat healthy food but sometimes just too much food,” she says. “It’s important to have moderation in your diet.”

She also states that “it’s important to know what your goal weight is and try to reach that weight and maintain it throughout the year.”

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