Congestive Heart Failure 3

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

In todays 60 Second Housecall, Dr. Edward Hill concludes a three-part discussion on congestive heart failure with a look at treatment options.

Dr. Hill:

Congestive heart failure is a serious and deadly disease. The best treatment is prevention, by protecting the heart muscle from damage.

Treatment for congestive heart failure includes lifestyle changes such as:

- limiting salt and fluid intake

- exercising appropriately to strengthen the heart

- eating a heart healthy diet to maintain weight, and

- avoiding smoking, which damages the heart arteries

Drug therapy may be needed to strengthen the heart and avoid further heart muscle damage. These therapies include:

- Diuretics to help reduce fluid buildup in your lungs and swelling in your feet and ankles.

- ACE inhibitors to lower blood pressure, reduce the strain on your heart and reduce the risk of a future heart attack.

- Beta blockers to slow your heart rate and lower your blood pressure to decrease the workload on your heart.

- Digoxin to make the heart beat stronger and pump more blood, and

- Blood thinners to reduce the risk of blood clots and stroke.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.