What is heart failure?
Heart failure doesn’t mean the heart has stopped beating. Quite simply, heart failure happens when the heart muscle can’t pump enough blood to supply the body’s needs. And it can happen to anyone—even if you have a healthy lifestyle or never had a heart attack.
An inherited heart condition, or a poorly managed disease such as diabetes which can damage the heart, could nudge you into a higher risk status. What’s not as easy to comprehend is that heart failure is multifaceted. It can be mild, with no symptoms, or it can be quite severe in which a patient needs a heart transplant to survive.
It’s usually a long-term, chronic condition, although it can come on suddenly. It often gets worse, but not always. Sound confusing? Keep reading to learn about the four different stages and what each stage could mean for your heart.