Heart disease are increasing steadily and are among the most common causes of death in Germany. Whether someone falls ill depends very much on their family disposition and their lifestyle.
In the worst case, heart disease can lead to death of the person concerned.
Under Heart disease all diseases of the heart muscle that have an influence on the heart's activity are summarized. Doctors differentiate between functional and organic heart diseases.
Typical and common heart diseases are:
A functional one Heart disease causes unpleasant complaints, but is based on a harmless overreaction of the vegetative nervous system and, in contrast to organic complaints, is harmless.
The most common coronary artery disease (CHD) is caused by hardening of the arteries. The restricted blood flow results in a lack of oxygen in the heart and typical complaints such as pain in different parts of the body, burning or stabbing pain in the chest area, tightness or sweating.
Angina pectoris manifests itself as a sudden heartbeat with fear of death, often accompanied by shortness of breath and sharp pain in the heart area, which radiate into the left arm.
A heart attack is triggered by a blocked coronary artery, which leads to a reduced blood flow to the heart and a lack of oxygen. A heart attack is announced by pain behind the breastbone, which radiates into the arm, back, abdomen or jaw. It is not uncommon for a circulatory breakdown to occur.
When a heart valve stops working properly and can pump enough blood into the heart's chambers, the heart's pumping capacity is impaired. Heart valve problems can be congenital, caused by inflammation or age-related wear and tear. If left untreated, they can be life-threatening.
Heart failure is often caused by another disease such as high blood pressure or cardiac arrhythmias. Depending on which side of the heart is affected, a distinction is made between right and left heart failure, which leads to congestion of the blood in the abdomen, liver or legs.
Cardiac arrhythmias bring the heart out of sync. A distinction is made between tachycardia, in which the heart beats too quickly and can trigger life-threatening ventricular fibrillation, and bradycardia, in which the heart beats too slowly.
Bacterial infections that have been delayed or not healed can promote myocarditis, which, if not recognized, can lead to sudden cardiac death.
In the worst case, heart disease can lead to death of the person concerned. Especially without treatment, the symptoms can become worse and the everyday life of the person affected can be significantly restricted. Most of those affected suffer from permanent fatigue and exhaustion from these diseases.
You can no longer carry out strenuous work and thus no longer actively participate in everyday life, so that the quality of life is significantly reduced. Furthermore, heart disease can lead to a heart attack or sudden cardiac death and thereby significantly limit and reduce the life expectancy of the patient. Many sufferers suffer from pain or a stinging in the chest and not infrequently from fear of death.
After a heart attack, there may be restrictions in everyday life, as those affected often suffer from sensitivity disorders if nerves or internal organs and the brain are damaged. Heart disease also prevents patients from participating in exercise classes or strenuous activities. Furthermore, these diseases can also lead to psychological complaints or to depression. They can also be genetically determined and thus be passed on to future generations. As a rule, life expectancy is always reduced due to heart disease.
For the diagnosis of Heart disease there are different examination methods:
The simplest is to listen to the heart with a stethoscope, during which the doctor may already notice irregularities in the heartbeat.
A resting or stress ECG provides information about irregularities in the heartbeat and shows how the heart reacts at rest and under stress
With the help of myocardial scintigraphy, in which a radioactive contrast agent is injected, a circulatory disorder can be observed at rest and during exercise. Angiography using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) can provide more detailed findings.
Heart disease can cause various complications and complaints. Since the spectrum of heart diseases is relatively large, it is generally not possible to make a universal prediction. In the worst case, the patient can die if these complaints are not treated. In many cases this leads to a heart attack.
Furthermore, heart diseases always lead to a reduced resilience of the patient. The person concerned appears tired and exhausted and no longer takes an active part in social life. It is not uncommon for chest pain and difficulty breathing to occur. In the event of a heart attack, healthy tissue can be damaged, leading to paralysis and other sensory disorders that further restrict everyday life. If left untreated, a heart attack is fatal.
Many heart diseases can be treated well and their risks can be limited. However, life expectancy may still be reduced, as not all damage is reversible and cannot be treated. The treatment usually does not result in any particular complications. However, the person concerned is dependent on a healthy lifestyle in order to avoid additional complaints.
If symptoms such as breathlessness, an increased pulse, and pain in the upper abdomen are noticed, the problem may be heart disease. A doctor should be consulted if the symptoms persist over a long period of time or if additional symptoms appear. If, for example, pale skin, sweats or panic attacks occur, this must be clarified by a doctor immediately. People who already suffer from a heart disease are particularly susceptible to secondary diseases.
People who have an unhealthy lifestyle or who suffer from chronic diseases of the immune system or blood vessels also often develop heart diseases and should see a doctor if the symptoms mentioned. Children, the elderly and pregnant women need to have problems in the cardiovascular system clarified quickly. Should serious complications such as a circulatory collapse or even a heart attack announce, it is best to call the emergency services immediately. Until the emergency doctor arrives, first aid measures must be provided. The affected person must then be treated in hospital. Depending on the underlying disease, a cardiologist or a specialist in internal medicine should be consulted.
The treatment methods depend on the cause of the disease. High blood pressure is treated with medication and monitored at intervals using a 24-hour measurement. Angina pectoris is usually treated with medication; in more severe cases, bypass surgery is performed.
When treating a heart attack, every minute counts. Until the ambulance arrives, the upper body should be raised a little higher. The doctor puts an infusion on site and monitors the heart with an EKG. In the hospital, the cause of the infarction is examined and treatment is initiated.
The closure can still be opened with medication within the first few hours. Sometimes a stent is placed to re-open the vessel, sometimes only bypass surgery or the insertion of an artificial heart valve will help. After the hospital stay, a rehabilitation stay of several weeks follows. Lighter cardiac arrhythmias are treated with medication, sometimes a pacemaker is used. Myocarditis is treated with antibiotics to heal the inflammation and prevent consequential damage.
The prognosis for heart disease depends on the underlying disease. In some cases, despite a diagnosed disease, the patient can achieve a good quality of life under the provision of various measures and lead a fulfilled life with only a few restrictions until the end of his life. Heart disease often leads to a reduction in general life expectancy. The sick person has to undergo lifelong check-ups and in most cases is subjected to an operation.
The way of life must be adapted to the physical possibilities and the requirements of the organism. The likelihood of sudden cardiac death is generally higher with heart disease. The death rate also increases with age. A healthy lifestyle and the avoidance of various stress factors often relieve existing complaints. With a good self-perception it is possible for the patient to react within a short time to peculiarities and irregularities of the heart rhythm and to counteract any symptoms that may arise.
If physical or emotional overexertion is avoided and the medical guidelines of the doctors are adhered to, there are good prospects for living with the disease for many heart diseases. Without treatment, an increase in symptoms and an increase in the death rate can be expected. There are currently no adequate natural therapies that should be used for heart disease.
Prevention does not help with family predispositions, but in general it can be said that a healthy lifestyle and sufficient exercise, if possible in the fresh air because of the oxygen supply, can help. Heart disease to avoid. Work-related and personal stress also plays a role in heart disease. Therefore, it is important to ensure adequate relaxation and reduce stress. Regular sporting activities can have a supportive effect.
Heart diseases can be very diverse and therefore occur in many different degrees of severity. The heart is our most important organ, in other words: If the heart does not work properly or if it suffers from a certain disease, there is an acute danger to life. For this reason, after diagnosis and treatment, appropriate follow-up care should of course also take place.
Only those who observe and follow regular check-ups can identify possible complications or exacerbations in good time. On the other hand, if you do without it completely, you are at great risk. Affected people who suffer from heart disease can, however, take some aftercare measures themselves.
This includes, for example, going to the doctor immediately if pain or other unusual feelings arise in the heart area. In such cases, going to the doctor should not be put off the back burner, because a doctor can identify and eliminate possible complications early on.
Diet also plays a major role in some heart diseases, so it should be taken into account in this context. Anyone who completely refrains from follow-up care for an existing heart disease is exposing themselves to a very high risk. There is an acute danger to life if regular visits to the doctor are not observed.
Heart disease is in many cases closely related to the patient's behavior. For this reason, it is often possible to favor the course of these diseases by adopting a health-oriented lifestyle and following the instructions of the treating physician.This is especially true for heart diseases that are associated with calcification of the blood vessels, high blood pressure (hypertension) or pathological overweight (obesity).
In any case, it is helpful if the patient refrains from possible nicotine consumption and from drinking a lot of alcohol. Smoking, in particular, is often a decisive factor in the prognosis of heart disease. Furthermore, it is part of self-help in everyday life to lose excess weight. This is ideally done by combining a healthy diet with a minimum amount of exercise. This not only benefits the heart and blood vessels, but also the psyche and the support and movement system, which is significantly less stressed by the weight reduction. However, excessive demands must be avoided during training.
Great excitement and stress cannot always be avoided. However, people with heart disease in particular benefit from a calmer lifestyle and adequate sleep. The nerves can be well stabilized by relaxation methods such as progressive muscle relaxation or by Far Eastern forms of movement such as tai chi or yoga.