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Heart Failure Signs and Symptoms

Heart Failure Signs and Symptoms in Downey, CA

Heart failure is characterized by breathing difficulties, fatigue, fainting, and swelling of the ankles and legs. Other symptoms that some people encounter include dizziness, a persistent cough, and a rapid heartbeat. If you have one or more heart failure symptoms, meet with our board-certified cardiologist, Dr. Kaushal Tamboli and get a cardiac examination. For more information, contact us or book an appointment online. We serve patients from Downey, CA, and surrounding areas.

Heart Failure Signs and Symptoms in Downey, CA
Heart Failure Signs and Symptoms in Downey, CA

Table of Contents:

What does heart failure fatigue feel like?
How does heart failure begin?
What is the earliest symptom of heart failure?
How long can you live with early signs of heart failure?

What does heart failure fatigue feel like?


Heart failure fatigue is more than just feeling tired; it’s an intense and persistent exhaustion. Many patients with heart failure fatigue describe their body as feeling heavy; it’s as if every movement requires extra effort. Simple activities like cooking, cleaning, climbing stairs, or taking a short walk can leave you feeling completely exhausted. You may need to take frequent breaks or even nap throughout the day just to cope with the overwhelming tiredness.

You may experience a lack of appetite, memory loss, or feelings of disorientation. In addition, you may experience shortness of breath during activity or while at rest. You may cough or wheeze due to fluid buildup in the lungs. Some patients notice that their feet, ankles, fingers, abdomen, and other areas experience swelling. It’s also common to experience fluctuations in weight when you have heart failure fatigue.

How does heart failure begin?


Heart failure can occur due to various underlying factors. When the heart’s ability to pump blood is compromised, various symptoms and health challenges can arise. One of the most common reasons for heart failure is damage to the heart muscle. This can be caused by conditions like coronary artery disease, heart attacks, or untreated high blood pressure. When the heart muscle experiences damage, it becomes weaker and pumps blood less efficiently.

In addition, there are other factors that can contribute to the development of heart failure. For example, damage to the heart valves, which regulate blood flow within the heart, significantly increases the risk of this condition. Furthermore, lifestyle factors such as obesity, diabetes, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption also put you at a higher risk.

Typically, the symptoms of heart failure begin slowly and worsen with time. As the condition progresses, you will begin to notice fatigue, shortness of breath, and an impact on your quality of life. As soon as you notice any concerns, it’s important to see an expert for diagnosis and comprehensive treatment.

What is the earliest symptom of heart failure?


It’s important to remember that symptoms of heart failure typically start gradually but may also onset suddenly. Some of the warning signs of heart failure to look out for include:

Shortness of breath – You may experience this symptom while active or while resting. Many patients report feeling winded even after minimal exertion, such as climbing stairs or a short walk.
Fatigue and weakness – If you experience a persistent feeling of tiredness that doesn’t go away with rest, it may be a sign of early-stage heart failure.
Rapid or irregular heartbeat – Abnormal heart rhythms can occur due to the heart’s inability to pump blood effectively or because of underlying heart conditions.
Wheezing or persistent cough – Fluid buildup in the lungs can lead to congestion, causing wheezing or coughing that doesn’t seem to go away.
Swelling – Swelling, especially in the ankles, feet, fingers, or belly, is a hallmark sign of heart failure. This swelling, termed edema, arises when fluid gathers in the body because of the heart’s diminished pumping abilities.
Nausea or lack of appetite – As a lack of blood flow can disrupt digestion, heart failure can cause symptoms like lack of appetite and nausea.
Difficulty concentrating – Patients with heart failure commonly report cognitive symptoms, such as difficulty with memory or concentration.

How long can you live with early signs of heart failure?


If you have early signs of heart failure, it’s very important to seek professional support to manage your condition and improve outcomes. Generally, with early detection and comprehensive care, many patients with early signs of heart failure can live for many years.

By working with a cardiologist, you can learn how to effectively manage your symptoms and prevent them from worsening. Treatment usually includes lifestyle adjustments, medications, and therapies to enhance heart function. The expert will create a personalized plan to alleviate your discomfort and prolong your life expectancy. The bottom line is that early intervention is the key to managing heart failure and improving your long-term prognosis. For more information, contact us and book an appointment. We serve patients from Downey CA, Norwalk CA, Lynwood CA, Cerritos CA, Lakewood CA, Whittier CA, and surrounding areas.