Viewer Comments: Congestive Heart Failure - Symptoms

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The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Congestive Heart Failure:

Congestive Heart Failure - Symptoms

For congestive heart failure, what were the symptoms and signs you experienced?

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Comment from: germanjohnson, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: June 01

I got off my 12 hour night shift on a Saturday in June 2009.I had to go by the bank before going home. I finished my business and lit a cigarette as I got into my truck to go home. I decided to have breakfast before going home, so I stopped by a fast food restaurant, parked and sat there finishing my cigarette, before going in. I awoke on Tuesday in the CCU of an area hospital. According to the information I was able to collect, I was "dead" when the EMT's arrived. They could not get me to respond, so they rushed me to a local hospital, where cardiologists got me stabilized to send me to the area heart center 30 miles away. During the trip, I went out again. Upon arrival, emergency surgery was done. I had a 97% blockage of the coronary artery. I had no pain or symptoms, other than being tired which I attributed to working all night.

Comment from: Tiffany, 35-44 Male (Caregiver) Published: April 12

My husband is 41, was diagnosed with non-ischemic dilated cardiomyopathy at age 33. I'm now sitting here typing this while I sit at his bedside. He was stable for 8 years, and active with some fatigue, until 2 months ago. He was dramatically tired, experiencing mild activity, abdominal pain, nausea/vomiting, and mild swelling in his ankles. He's had two bouts of chest pain in the past almost two weeks. My biggest fear has always been that because he was so well compensated for so many years, he would decompensate rapidly...too rapidly for a heart transplant. And now that fear seems to be coming true. .

Comment from: KJ, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 22

I first experienced congestive heart failure in Jan. 2008. The symptoms were mainly shortness of breath, particularly in the middle of the night. Being a heavy smoker for many years, I thought it was a lung problem such as emphysema or COPD. Then I noticed my ankles were swollen which ultimately led to the diagnosis of CHF. They did a heart cath and were planning to put in some stents. Then they realized that my heart was so plugged up I would need open heart surgery. So they did five (5) bypasses to try to get some blood pumping. As it turned out, the whole back-side of my heart muscle was virtually dead and even now it pumps at about 25-30% of what it should be. My breathing is better but I usually have zero energy. Walking up one flight of stairs is a real task. The good news is I finally quit smoking. They put me on Chantix which actually worked!

Comment from: Rochelle, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: March 10

I was diagnosed with congestive heart failure in September of 2009. I am a 41 year old female who has abused drugs my whole life. On the 21st of September 2009 when the swelling in my legs would not go down a friend of mine decided for me that it was time to go to the ER. I had no pain, so I was fighting it all the way down there. After all the test results came back, the ER doctor explained to me that my many years of drug abuse had finally caught up to me and my heart was failing. Since then I have been taking my medication and potassium as prescribed. I now have a new addiction and she the best puppy in the world!

Comment from: bev, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 11

dry cough can't sleep feel faint holding my fluid gaining weight short of breath feet legs ankles and hands swelling

Comment from: Mam-ma 62, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 16

I was just diagnosed with diastolic congestive heart failure. My symptoms presented like the flu or bronchitis, or pneumonia. By the time I went to the doctor, I did not think I was that bad. He sent me to the ER and I still did not have regular symptoms. Then when my lab work came back a number in my blood that was to be between 45-55 was 1200. So they kept me for awhile. I am a 62 years old and I have had four heart attacks, each one was different symptoms “ none of which were the symptoms they tell you to look out for. I didn't even know I had a heart attack until I also had a stroke.

Comment from: Ian, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: October 07

I was first diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in 1984. This is a genetic condition which thickens the walls of the heart. I was prone to random fainting attacks and was proscribed beta blockers. About 4 years ago as the result of research I was given a pace maker to regulate and maintain a steady heartbeat. This resolved the fainting attacks. In July 2009 whilst on a holiday to Florida I experienced severe breathing problems, particularly at night in bed. Went to local hospital where I was diagnosed with pneumonia and congestive heart failure. I am currently undergoing treatment as an out-patient. I feel generally lethargic and tired and feel unable to exercise although light exercise has been recommended.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Congestive Heart Failure:

Congestive Heart Failure - Prognosis

What is the prognosis for your congestive heart failure?

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