Enlarged heart can be treated with homeopathy
Recognize and treat heart muscle thickening
More muscles? In most cases, this is worth striving for. But in the case of our hearts, this is a dangerous development that must be treated medically. Typically, the adult human heart weighs around 300 grams and the muscle that separates the two chambers of the heart is 11 millimeters thick. An increase in heart muscle mass - called heart muscle hypertrophy - usually indicates that the heart is working too hard. At the same time, physical performance is limited. Competitive athletes from the endurance field are an exception. With them, an enlargement of the heart leads to better performance.
VIDEO: Eat to lower blood pressure in case of cardiac muscle thickening (15 min)
Mostly cause high blood pressure
Various factors can cause muscle mass in the left ventricle of the heart to increase. The most common trigger is high blood pressure. The increased pressure in the arteries makes it more difficult for the heart to pump open the aortic valve and expel the blood into the body. The heart tries to compensate for this increased effort through muscle growth.
A possible cause is also a narrowed transition to the main artery (aorta) from birth or after a heart inflammation. Because if the heart valve is too narrow (aortic valve stenosis) or the flow is obstructed, the blood cannot easily flow from the left ventricle into the body. The ventricular wall reacts to the increased counter pressure and exertion with muscle growth.
The right ventricle is only affected in a few cases, for example in the case of pulmonary vascular hypertension. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a special case: Here the heart muscle is thickened due to a hereditary predisposition. The disease occurs in families.
Symptoms come on slowly
In most people, a pathological thickening of the heart wall sooner or later becomes noticeable through reduced physical performance. The ventricle of the heart can no longer hold enough blood; its wall not only becomes thicker but also stiffer over time. Because non-muscular fiber tissue is also embedded between the muscle fibers. The reduced elasticity of the muscle leads to a reduced pumping capacity, which often manifests itself as shortness of breath.
Other symptoms that may indicate a thickened heart muscle:
- Fainting spells
- chronic fatigue
- thick legs (edema)
- frequent urination
- Cardiac arrhythmias
Complaints in the advanced stage
As the disease progresses, the symptoms appear not only under exertion, but also at rest. From a weight of around 500 grams, the coronary arteries can no longer supply the heart with sufficient oxygen. This imbalance between the heart muscle's need for oxygen and the supply of oxygen is often manifested in chest pain known as angina pectoris. Now at the latest there is an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
Heart muscle thickening often shows up on ultrasound
Heart muscle hypertrophy can usually be detected by an ultrasound scan of the heart. If this so-called echocardiography does not provide enough information, the doctor can also order an MRI (magnetic resonance tomography) of the heart.
In addition, the laboratory values of a blood sample give the doctor information about possible causes of the disease. If high blood pressure is suspected to be the trigger, the patient must undergo a 24-hour blood pressure measurement. Nocturnal screening with a measuring device shows whether sleep apnea has caused the heart muscle to thicken.
Timely treatment is important
A thickening of the heart wall cannot be reversed - with the exception of the athlete's heart. However, if it is recognized in good time, the progression of the disease can be stopped with the help of suitable therapy. Without measures, there is a high probability that heart failure (cardiac insufficiency) will develop, which can result in a heart attack or even cardiac death.
The therapy depends on the individual trigger for the thickening. If there is a heart valve defect, this defect is usually remedied by a surgical procedure. If high blood pressure is causing the heart muscle to thicken, the patient will likely need to take medication for high blood pressure. Endurance sports are also helpful - suitable exercise helps very well to lower blood pressure and thus relieve the heart.
Donating blood also has the effect of lowering blood pressure in many people. That is why it can make sense to donate blood three to four times a year.
Lower blood pressure with targeted nutrition
Targeted nutrition also helps to get high blood pressure under control. Those affected should drink at least two liters a day and make sure that they do not consume more than three grams of salt per day. Also taboo: ready meals, wheat and sweets. Instead, vegetarian, protein-rich dishes with anti-inflammatory spices should be on the menu. Intermittent fasting can also have positive effects if you are overweight.
Food for a healthy heart
Cardiovascular diseases are widespread in our country. Common causes are high blood pressure or being overweight. Proper nutrition can strengthen the heart. more
Protect the heart - eat less salt
Much salt in food increases the risk of high blood pressure or even heart muscle thickening. If you eat less salt, you can lower your blood pressure in many cases. more
Recipes for high blood pressure
Low-salt and plenty of vegetables: healthy dishes for people with high blood pressure or the resulting thickening of the heart muscle. more
This topic in the program:
The Nutritional Docs | 07/16/2018 | 9:00 p.m.
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