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 Dr. George Jacob
Heart Infocenter

Holistic-online.com

Cardiomyopathy

Dilated Congestive Cardiomyopathy

Prognosis of Dilated Congestive Cardiomyopathy

About 70 percent of people with dilated congestive cardiomyopathy die within 5 years of diagnosis.

The prognosis gets worse when:

  • The heart walls become thinner
  • Heart function decreases
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Men (
  • African Americans have half of survival rate as compared to whites.

About 50 percent of the deaths are sudden death. Usually, this results from an abnormal heart rhythm.

Treatment of Dilated Congestive Cardiomyopathy

1. Treat specific underlying causes such as alcohol abuse or the infection. If alcohol abuse is the cause, the person must abstain from alcohol. If a bacterial infection causes sudden inflammation of the heart muscle, it's treated with an antibiotic.

2. A person suffering from coronary artery disease, may experience angina (chest pain) due to the poor blood supply. In this case a drug such as a nitrate, beta-blocker, or calcium channel blocker is prescribed. The patient will be advised to get enough rest and sleep and to avoid stress as much as possible to help reduce strain on the heart.

3. Sometimes clots may form on the heart chamber walls. In this case, anticoagulant drugs may be prescribed to prevent clotting.

4. Abnormal heart rhythms are treated with drugs. The are administered in small doses. The dosage is increased gradually to the desied level watching carefully for any adverse reactions such as a reduction in the force of heart contractions.

5. Heart failure is treated with drugs-such as ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitor, along with a diuretic.

6. In most cases, the heart failure is likely to eventually be fatal. Heart transplant is often recommended for dilated congestive cardiomyopathy due to this poor prognosis.

Caution: Cardiomyopathy is a life-threatening condition. If you suspect you or someone you know is suffering from cardiomyopathy, seek medical assistance immediately.

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