Heart Disease: Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
- What is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- What are the symptoms of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- What causes hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- How is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy diagnosed?
- How is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy treated?
- What lifestyle changes are recommended to treat hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- What medications are used for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- What surgical procedures are used to treat hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?
- How can I prevent endocarditis?
- Related cardiomyopathy article:
Cardiomyopathy - on eMedicineHealth
- Find a local Cardiologist in your town
What Is Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy?
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is associated with thickening of the heart muscle, most commonly at the septum between the ventricles, below the aortic valve. This leads to stiffening of the walls of the heart and abnormal aortic and mitral heart valve function, both of which may impede normal blood flow out of the heart.
What Are the Symptoms of HCM?
Many people with HCM have no symptoms or only minor symptoms, and live a normal life. Other people develop symptoms, which progress and worsen as heart function worsens.
Symptoms of HCM can occur at any age and may include:
- Chest pain or pressure (occurs usually with exercise or physical activity, but can also occur with rest or after meals).
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea), especially with exertion.
- Fatigue (feeling overly tired).
- Fainting (caused by irregular heart rhythms, abnormal responses of the blood vessels during exercise, or no cause may be found).
- Palpitations (fluttering in the chest) due to abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias), such as atrial fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia.
- Sudden death occurs in a small number of patients with HCM.
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