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Acute Feelings Failure: Recognizing Signs And Symptoms

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Although passion failure is a chronic condition, acute exacerbations are frequent and occur with serious complications; patients with heart failure and their families can benefit edit prognosis in acute events whether they are taught to recognise the tell-tale signs of worsening condition and seek immediate medical help. "Any delayed recognition of these signs is associated with an increased percentage of hospitalisation and complications, including mortality," says Professor Ferenc Follath from the University Infirmary of Zurich, Switzerland.
Speaking at Love Failure Congress 2009, Professor Follath explained that around two-thirds of these acute events ensue in patients with published heart failure, and all over one-third as a first event in those with undiagnosed heart failure.1,2 Recognition of the signs and symptoms of a worsening condition, therefore, will support minimise any delay in treatment and divide argument rates.
Citing existing data, Professor Follath said that heart failure patients and their families should be on the alert for any evidence of the symptoms presented by patients admitted to infirmary for emergency treatment. These symptoms include:
  • shortness of breath (dyspnea), found to be evident in 92% of acute emotions failure patients
  • peripheral edema (in 35%)
  • cough (in 33%)
  • breathing complication when mendacity apartment lodgings (orthopnea, in 30%)
  • chest pain (in 29%)
  • nocturnal dyspnea (in 28%)
  • fatigue (in 17%)
  • palpitations (in 7%)
Shortness of breath, said Professor Follath, is by far the most frequent presenting symptom, and families should recognise that it can be described in changing ways - from "suffocation" to "tight chest" to "heavy breathing". At the same time, he warned that many elderly patients with affection failure may acquire co-existing conditions with non-cardiac symptoms, and these may be misleading. Careful instruction, therefore, in a simple comprehensible way is foremost to guard early warning and brisk treatment.
An American study reported in 2008 construct that patients hospitalised with acute heart failure had experienced appreciable delays in seeking medical alarm (with an average delay lifetime of 13.3 hours).3 Person sex, multiple presenting symptoms, absence of a novel of heart failure, and seeking medical care between midnight and 6 a.m. were associated with prolonged prehospital delay.
"This is why it is so foremost to demonstrate patients and their families how to recognise the symptoms of acute heart failure," said Professor Follath, "to seek medical cure without loosing critical age of hours or even days before capture treatment can be started."
According to Professor John McMurray, Head of the state of the Heart Failure Company of the ESC, cases admitted to hospital for acute heart failure had until recently a too poor prognosis, but the more appropriate identification of symptoms - and thus their more appropriate treatment - enjoy brought about a 40-50% reduction in mortality rates in a short time.
Heart Failure Congress 2009 is organised by the European Kingdom of Cardiology and Heart Failure Collection of the ESC, and takes assign from 30 May to 2 June at the Palais Acropolis, Nice, France.
Follath F. Apprendre aux patients a reconnaĆ tre les signes d'alerte. 31 May 2009, 08.30-10.00 Heart Failure Congress 2009.
Goldberg RJ, Goldberg JH, Pruell S, et al. Delays in seeking medical interest in hospitalized patients with decompensated heart failure. Am J Med 2008; 121: 212-218.
Information on the scientific program is available at
ESC Press Profession
European Community of Cardiology
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