Left heart failure is one of the most common types of heart failure that occurs when the left ventricle doesn’t produce enough blood to the body. If the left ventricle is difficult to fill with blood between beats, it’s also called diastolic heart failure. When the left ventricle can’t send blood out as it should, it’s also known as systolic heart failure.
Left heart failure symptoms can go through four stages like other forms of heart failure. The stages vary from no symptoms of heart damage and need proper medication through advanced heart failure that may have the most sophisticated treatment options such as an implanted left ventricular help device and heart transplant.
The main goal is to lower the progress of left heart failure symptoms so as to resume living life. Specialists will operate to change a treatment plan that’s customized to conditions and goals.
Left Heart Failure Vs. Right Heart Failure
Right-sided heart failure is usually less common as compared to the result of left-sided heart failure. The right side of your heart pushes blood returning from your body through the lungs where it is filled up with oxygen.
If the left side of your heart isn’t forcefully moving blood along, it performs the right side work harder as blood and other fluids back up into your lungs and other organs.
Types of Left Heart Failure
The heart has two main sending chambers: the right ventricle and the left ventricle. The right ventricle collects deoxygenated blood from the body and transfers it to the lungs, where it takes up oxygen. The larger and more powerful left ventricle pushes oxygenated blood to the body through the aorta.
Conditions such as hypertension, obesity, and coronary heart disease cause the heart to work harder to transfer the same amount of blood. Over time, the heart’s main pumping power is generally weak and no longer controls the blood that it is taking from the lungs. Heart failure occurs when this happens.
Systolic failure: Systolic failure happens when the left ventricle performs less to maintain blood circulating normally throughout the body, which provides the body with a normal supply of blood. As the left ventricle pumps are difficult to compensate, it goes weaker and thinner. This result shows that blood goes back into organs and prevents fluid form in the lungs or swelling in other parts of the body.
Diastolic heart failure: Diastolic heart failure happens when the left ventricle has become stiff or thick, and it is difficult to fill the lower left chamber of the heart properly, which lowers the amount of blood out from the body. It helps blood to build up inside the left atrium. Consequently, the blood will then go to the lungs that causes symptoms of heart failure.
Left Heart Failure Symptoms
Symptoms of left heart failure can never go unnoticed, but they add to overtime. It is crucial to go for regular checkups with physicians for an early diagnosis and treatment to control signs and symptoms. Left heart failure symptoms can raise complications including kidney and/or liver disease and heart attack.
Left heart failure symptoms include-
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath (especially on exertion)
- Orthopnea (shortness of breath when lying down)
- Paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea
- Exercise intolerance
- Fast or irregular heartbeat
- Peripheral edema (swelling on the feet, ankles, and legs)
- Unexplained weight gain
- Persistent coughing or wheezing
- Urinate more than usual (polyuria) at night (nocturia)
These symptoms occur when they cause the heart to pump more which causes further damage such as:
- Enlarged heart
- Rapid heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Less blood moving to the arms and legs
It is always better to get an early diagnosis and treatment. It reduces the process of left-sided heart failure and helps you to control your symptoms. Left heart failure symptoms can cause complications like kidney or liver disease and heart attack if it is undiagnosed and untreated.
The most common cause of left heart failure is decreased left ventricular myocardial function. There are two kinds of dysfunction: systolic and diastolic.
1. Systolic dysfunction (HFrEF) cause due to-
- Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy
- Coronary heart disease(ischemic)
- High blood pressure
- Valvular disease
2. Diastolic dysfunction (HFpEF)can cause due to-
- High blood pressure
- Coronary artery disease
- Diabetes mellitus
- Atrial fibrillation
- High cholesterol levels
Left Heart Failure Diagnosis
Diagnostic include procedures and technologies that are given below:
- Cardiac catheterization
- Chest X-ray.
- Electrocardiogram (EKG)
- Electrophysiology study
- Radionuclide imaging
- Treadmill Exercise
The following tests help a physician to identify a patient’s heart failure.
Left heart failure is a heart problem in which the muscle on the left side of the heart is reduced and the pump doesn’t perform to the body. Left-sided heart failure is a process, not a disease. Proper treatment for left heart failure symptoms may help some people to live longer. In conclusion, people having heart failure may have many symptoms. In addition, they may require a heart transplant or a ventricular assist device (VAD).