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Forum Name: Heart Failure

Question: Left ventricle wall thickness


 mistieroze - Fri Mar 04, 2005 7:03 pm

I am 23 year old mother of one. I am overweight, am a smoker, have high blood pressure, (I don't remember which was which) but my bad cholesterol is 156. Most of my mother's side of the family all have some sort of heart disease.

I have been having series of palpitations (which I have read a lot about on this board -- and it really eases my mind). I went for an echo 2 years ago and in my left ventricle both my septal wall thickness and the post wall thickness were 1.1 (normal is 0.6 - 1.1). This time my echo showed both the septal wall thickness and the post wall thickness as being 1.2. Also that I have a MVP but that it's no big deal.

After talking to the doctor he assured me that if I ate correctly, exercised, lowered my blood pressure (with meds), lowered my cholesterol (with meds) that all would be well and I wouldn't have anything to worry about.

My question is. If I so everything the doctor said (lost weight, quit smoking, did exercise, lowered my cholesterol and blood pressure) would the walls thin out back into the normal range or would they just not get any worse?

Also how thick can these walls get without having major complications from it? I understand that I am not in the normal range, but it would ease my mind (A LOT) if I knew that I was still far away from having a major problem.

Thank you so much.
 Dr. Yasser Mokhtar - Sat Mar 05, 2005 1:04 pm

User avatar Dear Mistieroze,

You have mild left ventricular hypertrophy and since this is worsening since your last echocardiogram, this reflects the fact that your blood pressure has not been under proper control.

With weight loss, exercising, stopping smoking, sodium restriction in the diet and medications, your blood pressure will be under better control and with proper blood pressure control, the left ventricular hypertrophy will regress (go back to normal). There are certain anti-hypertensive medications that cause regression more than other medications, you can discuss the choice of medications with your doctor and i am sure he will give the best advice.

Left ventricular hypertrophy, irrespective of any other disease that patients have, increases the risk of having heart attacks, strokes and renal failure (reflecting the fact blood pressure is poorly controlled). In addition, left ventricular hypertrophy increases the risk of sudden death.

You have a very strong positive family histopry for coronary disease and you have a high ldl and your blood pressure is not under good control, all of these, in addition to smoking as well. This means that you have 4 major risk factors for coronary disease and you are at a much higher risk for suffering from an early heart attack or a stroke.

You are a young mother and you have to take this matter very seriously to be in the best of health.

The palpitations that you have are most probably related to your mitral valve prolpse.

Thank you very much for using our website http://doctorslounge.com and i hope that this information helped.

Yasser Mokhtar, M.D.

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