Heart Disease – Symptoms and Causes
Heart disease, also known as cardiovascular disease, refers to conditions that alter the normal function of the cardiovascular system. Heart disease remains to be one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide.
A person’s lifestyle plays a major role in getting a heart disease. Smoking, stress, abuse of drugs all trigger an abnormal heart function and lowers a person’s immune system. Along with that, conditions such as having plaques in the arteries, inflamed blood vessels, high blood pressure, too much cholesterol and sugar in the blood can also lead to cardiovascular diseases.
Valvular Heart Disease
When one of the four valves of the heart is damaged, a valvular disease takes place. This condition causes the valves to become narrow and not have a smooth closure during a contraction. Sometimes, it can also cause blood to leak when there’s a contraction. Chest pains and shortness of breath are also other symptoms included.
In Dilated Cardiomyopathy, the cardiac muscle becomes weak. It is usually asymptomatic, but when the condition intensifies, pounding heartbeats, breathlessness, and easily fatigability is experienced during activity.
People with this disease experience difficulty of breathing and angina-like symptoms such as pain, tightness, and discomfort in the chest. Arms and legs become weak, painful, or cold due to the narrowing of blood vessels.
When a person’s heartbeat is irregular, higher or lower than the normal heartbeat which is 60-100 beats per minute, he or she is experiencing heart arrhythmias. Arrhythmias bring chest pains, shortness of breath, dizziness, easily fatigability, and loss of consciousness.
Congenital Heart Defects
Heart defects are not difficult to spot in newborns because people born with a heart defect usually appear cyanotic, having grayish or bluish discoloration of the skin. Their eyes, legs, or abdomen appear to be swollen.