Good cardiac function depends upon the heart’s ability to fill with blood easily and then pump that blood out. This process distributes oxygen throughout the body and maintains health.
If the heart cannot fill or pump correctly, heart failure, also called congestive heart failure, occurs. Generally, this condition develops over a period of time.
An affected heart gradually becomes weaker, or fails, but does not stop. As this process happens and heart function worsens, fluid may build up in the lungs and throughout the body. This congestion is why the condition often is referred to as congestive heart failure.
Heart failure may be caused by coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathy, heart attack, arrhythmia or other heart problems.
Cardiovascular patients at Abington Memorial Hospital benefit from advanced technology for diagnostics and treatment. For those affected by heart failure, lifestyle changes, medication, surgical procedures and implanted devices such as pacemakers and cardioverter defibrillators may be used to treat and control their condition. Close monitoring is important.
A special heart pump, called a ventricular assist device, or VAD, may be recommended for certain heart failure patients. Our specialists have expertise in the surgical implantation and monitoring of VADs, also known as left ventricular assist devices (LVADs).
Read a heart failure patient’s story about receiving an advanced treatment technique through Abington’s Comprehensive Heart Failure Program.
For expertise on diagnosing and treating heart failure, contact the specialists at Abington’s Pilla Heart Center and Comprehensive Heart Failure Program.