Congestive Heart Failure

Have you ever tried blowing up a basketball or an air mattress with a pump that just wasn’t up to the task? If so, you can easily understand the principle of congestive heart failure.

Congestive heart failure (CHF)

Is inability of the heart to pump sufficient oxygenated blood to body tissues. Those tissues need plenty of oxygen, and if they don’t get it, you’re not going to have an easy time.

Symptoms of this failure of the heart to pump adequately often include signs of pulmonary or systemic congestion or limited cardio output. Limited cardio output essentially means your heart isn’t firing on all cylinders, and it’s not hard to predict what can happen when that’s the case. People with congestive heart failure often experience such symptoms as fatigue, diminished exercise capacity, and shortness of breath. Other symptoms can include accumulation of fluids in the lungs, liver, and lower extremities, intestinal difficulty in absorbing medicines and nutrients, and, if CHF is untreated, negative effects in virtually every organ of the body.

Causes of congestive heart failure

Include various diseases that weaken or cause stiffening of the heart muscle and diseases causing an increase in body tissues’ demand for oxygen to a point beyond the heart’s ability to supply it.

The two main types of congestive heart failure are predominant systolic dysfunction, the heart’s inability to contract normally and expel sufficient blood, and predominant diastolic dysfunction, the heart’s inability to relax and fill normally.

Key risk factors for developing congestive heart failure include obesity, diabetes, and use of tobacco, alcohol, or drugs. Risk increases with age, so the elderly need to be especially careful to avoid or treat any of those conditions. Also important are such steps as minimizing salt intake and taking care of hypertension.

Treatment of congestive heart failure can include medications to increase heart pumping capacity or help your system remove excess fluid and sodium. Availability of such medications has led to a significant increase in life expectancy of people diagnosed with CHF.

Medicare provides some important benefits to people dealing with congestive heart failure. Although some Medicare supplement insurance companies may refuse to insure you if you have CHF, Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans (SNPs) provide focused, specialized health care for specific groups of people including those with chronic conditions such as congestive heart failure. If you’re suffering from congestive heart failure, you may need to enroll in a Special Needs Plan in order to get the coverage you need for your condition.

You may also need to address certain lifestyle factors, and a Special Needs Plan can offer some great preventive care services to help there as well.

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For further information about Medicare Advantage, Medicare supplement insurance, or any other coverage that may help you deal with congestive heart failure or any other condition, contact a licensed, bonded representative, here, who can answer any questions you may have and help you find the health coverage that’s right for you at a price you can afford.

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