Types of Heart Failure

Heart failure is a complex condition that can manifest in different ways based on the underlying causes and structural abnormalities. The main types of heart failure are:

Systolic Heart Failure: Also known as heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF), this type occurs when the heart's left ventricle is weakened and unable to pump blood effectively, resulting in a reduced ejection fraction (the percentage of blood pumped out with each heartbeat).

Diastolic Heart Failure: Also called heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), this type occurs when the heart's left ventricle becomes stiff and less compliant during relaxation (diastole). The ejection fraction remains normal, but the heart's filling capacity is impaired, leading to decreased cardiac output.

Right-Sided Heart Failure: This type involves the right side of the heart failing to pump blood efficiently, often due to left-sided heart failure or conditions affecting the lungs, such as pulmonary hypertension or chronic lung disease.

Left-Sided Heart Failure: This type refers to failure of the left side of the heart, which can lead to a buildup of fluid in the lungs (pulmonary edema), causing symptoms like shortness of breath and coughing.

High-Output Heart Failure: In this rare type, the heart pumps an increased volume of blood, but the body's tissues do not receive enough oxygen and nutrients due to conditions like severe anemia, hyperthyroidism, or arteriovenous malformations.

Identifying the specific type of heart failure is essential for tailoring treatment plans and optimizing patient outcomes. Many individuals may have a combination of these types, and a comprehensive evaluation by a healthcare provider is necessary to determine the underlying cause and severity of heart failure.

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