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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Cardiomyopathy

Question: Idiopathic Cardiomyopathy

 Ed - Sat Aug 02, 2003 9:24 pm

Please advise of recent advances or accepted treatment of Idiopathic Cardiomyopathy. I am a white male, 48 years old, 6'2", 205 lbs, and reasonably active.

Additionally, my hands and/or feet have recently begun swelling if I have performed a task that puts considerable pressure on them. Swelling will generally persist for 12 to 18 hours. I do not have swelling of my feet or hands otherwise. Examples: using a hammer - fingers on right hand will swell; Squatting with my weight on balls of feet - bottom of one or both feet will swell for.

Thanks in advance for your responses.............
 sisohel - Sun Aug 03, 2003 2:22 pm

Dear Ed,
Thank you for using our website. You didn't mention for how long you have been diagnosed as Ididopathic Cardiomyopathy and what medications you are taking.
As you know Idiopathic Cardiomyopathy is diseases of the muscle of the heart where no specific cause have been found and the treatment is also symptomatic. Recently many different clinical trials have shown some drugs to be benefitial to the patient. That again depends on which type Idiopathic cardiomyopathy you are having and your sympotms.
Please provide me with detailed information and I will try to give you some more information.

Best Regards,
 Ed - Sun Aug 03, 2003 4:12 pm

Dr.Shariful Islam Sohel,

Thank you for your response. I will provide further information as you request.

48 year old white male 6'2" 205 lbs.

No chest pain, Resting blood pressure currently approx 125/78

Diagnosed Idiopathic Cardiomyopathy Oct. 2002
EF = 26% from echo and ischemia,
mild to moderate decreased LV systolic function (from cath)

Lipid Panel : all in normal
CBC: all normal

No Previous_surgeries:

1 asprin
1 Mavik 2mg
1 Coreg 6.25 mg
1 Spironolactone 25 mg
1 Celebrex 200 mg

Father.....deceased .... PSP
Mother....quad bypass

 sisohel - Mon Aug 04, 2003 3:17 pm

Idiopathic Dilated Cardiomyopathy (IDC)

Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDC) is a disease of unknown cause that results in an enlarged heart that does not pump properly. It is the most common reason people get heart transplants. The fact that it occurs so often, the mystery of its cause, and the lack of a long-term effective treatment other than heart transplant make IDC a problem for both the people who have it and their health care providers.

Most people with IDC are between 20 and 50 years old when they first see a health care provider for their disease. Blacks and men have a higher risk of developing IDC than whites and women.

IDC causes the heart chambers to dilate (expand). The heart itself may become very large, and the heart muscle gets thinner. The pumping of the heart gets weaker, and the circulation slows.

IDC results in a heart that is too weak to circulate the blood properly. The most common problem is congestive heart failure. The symptoms are shortness of breath with physical activity, waking from sleep at night short of breath, and swelling of the legs or ankles due to retention of fluids.

With poor circulation, blood clots may form in the heart, break off, and float in the bloodstream. These clots can clog the flow of blood in an artery. The loss of blood can cause damage to a kidney, an arm or a leg, and even cause a stroke. People with IDC often have abnormal heart rhythms that may result in sudden death.

Considering Treatment :
Your health care provider will consider all of the other causes that act like IDC and will treat them, if possible. Drinking too much alcohol may cause a weakened heart muscle. Treatment may be as simple as for you to stop drinking alcohol. On the other hand, alcohol causes these symptoms only rarely.

Treatment is directed at controlling congestive heart failure. You may take medicines that make your heart muscle pump more effectively. You may also take diuretics to help reduce swelling in your legs and arms. Your health care provider may suggest that you reduce your physical activity and the amount of salt you eat.

Drugs called beta blockers are frequently used to treat IDC. Over the course of several months, they may improve heart function. Your health care provider may prescribe a drug called a vasodilator. These drugs make the blood vessels open up. The increased size of the blood vessels allows more blood to flow through them. This lowers blood pressure slightly and lessens the workload of the heart. Vasodilators usually reduce symptoms and decrease the chances that you will need to be treated for congestive heart failure in a hospital.
Anticoagulants help to keep the blood from clotting and prevent artery blockages and strokes.Treatment of heart rhythm problems in IDC may be important. Sometimes a device called an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is needed to treat abnormal heart rhythms.

Treatment with combinations of drugs helps to significantly improve the outlook. Cardiac transplantation is an option for those who have severe symptoms that are not responding to medicines.

I think this should provide all answers to your query.

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