Heart Failure Complications
Even if you are treating your heart failure successfully, you may develop a complication that can be serious and life-threatening. It is important to identify complications of heart failure as soon as possible, because some can be extremely serious conditions. You can discuss your complications with your doctor and learn to take the proper steps to prevent them. The table below outlines the complications of heart failure.
What is it?
What problems does it cause?
|Atrial fibrillation||An irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia)|
|Ventricular fibrillation or tachycardia||Irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias)|
|Kidney failure||Reduced functioning of your kidneys|
Decreased oxygen-carrying hemoglobin in red blood cells
|Stroke||Your brain is deprived of oxygen because its blood supply has been significantly decreased or cut off.|
|Heart valve condition (especially mitral regurgitation)||A leaky valve reduces the efficiency of the heart’s pumping action.|
|Cardiac cachexia||Unintentional severe weight loss|
|Leg venous stasis and ulcers|| |
Venous stasis: Your skin thickens and looks shiny or scaly, your hair might also fall out, your skin may also turn brown or reddish.
Ulcers: Injuries to your swollen legs cause fluid to constantly ooze out of cuts in your skin.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD - Cardiology|
|Last Revised||August 5, 2010|
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