Congestive Heart Failure Case Study

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Congestive Heart Failure Case Study

By | December 2010
Page 1 of 8

Congestive Heart Failure – Case Study

Pathophysiology – BSRN – 420
Instructors: October 10, 2010

Report on Congestive Heart Failure

The heart is a muscle, the most important one in the body. It works like a pump; it receives blood from the body and pumps the blood into the lungs, where it receives oxygen. This oxygen rich blood is then pumped out in to the body system to nourish the body. Congestive heart failure occurs when this pumping action is impaired, and the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. When the heart cannot pump out the blood it receives, excess fluid may back up into the lungs and other body tissues. If the amount of nourishment to the body decreases and causes fluid to overflow into the lungs, this may cause symptoms of congestive heart failure. According to (Understanding Congestive Heart Failure, 1995, pg.1), this is an illustration on how the blood flows through the body and how the heart works. How the heart works:

1) Venous blood flows from the body to the right side of the heart. 2) Blood is then pumped to the lungs to pick up oxygen. 3) After picking up oxygen, blood goes to the left side of the heart. 4) Blood is pumped out to nourish the body.

Congestive heart failure is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood throughout the body. Heart failure does not mean that your heart has stopped or is about to stop working, it means that your heart is not able to pump blood the way it should. The weakening of the heart’s pumping ability causes blood and fluid to back up into the lungs. The buildup of fluid in the feet, ankles and legs, called edema, and it causes tiredness and shortness of breath. The leading causes of heart failure are coronary artery disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. It is almost always a chronic, long-term condition, although it...