How to treat swelling of the legs with heart failure

Heart failure is a pathological condition, the basis of which is a violation of the ability of the heart to maintain normal blood circulation in the human body.

In the story "Heart failure" Alexinwrote that this ailment is a disease of our time. And indeed indeed, at present the prevalence of this severe pathology is high enough. Despite the fact that it is most often diagnosed in adults and elderly people, doctors also argue that in recent years the number of cases of its detection at an early age has also significantly increased. Unfortunately, heart failure in children is often the main cause of the increase in infant mortality.

If we talk about the prevalence of this pathologyin the general population, according to the averaged data from various medical studies, it is about 2%, while it is noted that heart failure is most often detected in the elderly, namely, 10-15% of persons belonging to the age group 65 and older.

Development of cardiovascular failurecan be caused by a variety of different causes and factors, however, in most cases its occurrence is a natural outcome of existing and progressive heart diseases in the human body.

The main causes of heart failure include:

  • heart damage (can be caused by angina, cardiomyopathy, myocardial infarction, myocarditis, cardiosclerosis, and also by systemic diseases such as lupus, rubella, rheumatism);
  • overload of the heart muscle (often due to pulmonary hypertension, arterial hypertension, stenosis of the pulmonary trunk or aorta, as well as failure of the heart valve apparatus);
  • disorders related to the process of filling the heart with blood (can be caused by cardiac pericarditis, amyloidosis, fibroelastosis);
  • violation of the heart rate (appears against the background of progressive arrhythmia).

Doctors say that sometimes fever, anemia, thyroid disease, pregnancy, metabolic disorders and alcoholism can also contribute to the appearance of this pathology.

Despite the fact that the severity of the clinicalpictures and symptoms of heart failure usually depend on its shape and stage of development, doctors still distinguish a number of common signs that are characteristic for the manifestation of this pathology.

How is heart failure manifested? Usually, at the initial stages of its development, the ailment in question can be manifested by the appearance of sufficiently pronounced symptoms. They include:

  1. Puffiness. Edema in heart failure is the most important sign of the development of this pathology. Their appearance is due to the fact that the body due to disruption of the heart produces excessive fluid retention. As a rule, initially with heart failure swelling of the legs, then the hips, abdomen and face. It is also noted that with heart failure, leg edema usually has a symmetrical character and is accompanied by cyanosis of the toes.
  2. Tachycardia. Initially, tachycardia acts as a compensatory mechanism supporting normal functions of the heart muscle, however, with a long course of pathology, it begins to contribute to the disruption of the myocardium due to the loss of its compensatory properties.
  3. Coughing attacks. With heart failure, cough is a consequence of bronchospasm due to circulatory failure in the lungs.
  4. Fatigue, weakness, headache, distracted attention. memory impairment. The manifestation of these symptoms is due to poor blood supply to the muscles and brain.
  5. Ortopnoe. The appearance of orthopnea is associated with a slowing of the movement of blood in the pulmonary vessels and with its outflow from the lungs to the legs when lying down.

If shortness of breath appears in an upright position,and also in a calm state, this may indicate the formation of not only cardiac, but pulmonary insufficiency, which according to medical terminology is already defined as cardiopulmonary insufficiency. In the case when pulmonary heart failure progresses, in addition to constant dyspnea, cyanosis of the skin also appears.

Sometimes, in addition to the above signs of the patientcan also detect the appearance of such specific symptoms as frequent urination (especially at night) and painful manifestations in the right hypochondrium.

Classification of heart failureis diverse. In modern medicine, this pathology is distinguished by its localization and the form of the flow, the degree of development and compensation of the disorders that arise, as well as the severity of the physical condition.

Localization pathology is divided into left ventricular, right ventricular and total.

With left ventricular form of pathology, blood stasisis observed in the pulmonary (small) circle of blood circulation. Left-sided congestive heart failure appears with lesion of the left heart. The main signs of left ventricular heart failure are manifested by shortness of breath, cardiac asthma, orthopnea, lung edema.

Right ventricular heart failureis characterized by congestion in the body (large) circle of circulation and is expressed by acrocyanosis, swelling, tachycardia, and enlargement of the liver. It occurs because of the defeat of the right side of the heart muscle.

The total form of pathology indicates the presence of blood stagnation in both the pulmonary and in the bodily circles of the circulation.

According to the form of the current, it is divided into acute and chronic.

The acute form of pathology expresses itselfa rapidly developing process that takes a short time (minutes, hours). The chronic form of pathology is characterized by a fairly slow formation. Can develop for months and even years.

Classification by degree of compensation

By the degree of compensation of the developed disorders, the pathology is divided into compensated and decompensated.

With a compensated form, the signs of the existing circulatory disorders arise only when the load is applied.

Decompensated heart failure is characterized by the appearance of signs of circulatory dysfunction, not only with a physician, but also in a calm state.

Classification by degree of progression

According to the degree of progression, according to the national classification, the pathology under consideration has three stages of development.

Stage 1 is characterized by the appearance of the main signs of pathology during physical exertion.

Stage 2 implies the appearance of pathological signs both in a calm state, and under physical loads.

Stage 3 shows not only the violations of hemodynamics, but also the development of pathological and structural changes in tissues, organs.

Classification by severity of state

The severity of the physical condition is divided into four functional classes.

1 FC indicates the lack of limitations of performance.

2 FC is characterized by the presence of moderate limitations of performance.

3 FK testifies to the expressed decrease in working capacity at insignificant fiznagruzkke.

4 FC expresses an intensive decline in working capacity, due to the appearance of pathological signs both in a calm state, and under a physical load.

Doctors warn that to apply any methodsself-diagnosis and self-treatment in case of manifestation of typical signs of this pathology is strictly prohibited. To understand how to treat heart failure and accurately determine the developed form of it, you must first go through a full diagnostic medical examination, and only then take the medications prescribed by your doctor to treat heart failure.

Since first aid for cardiacinsufficiency is a real chance to avoid not only the emergence of severe consequences, but also the sudden death of a person, it is important to consider in detail all of its basic principles.

  • call an ambulance;
  • providing access to oxygen;
  • placing the patient in a semi-sitting position;
  • the imposition of tugging on the thighs (10 minutes after placing the patient in a semi-sitting position);
  • control of blood pressure;
  • admission to patients with nitroglycerin (use any other medications for heart failure before the arrival of representatives of medicine is not recommended).

If a cardiac arrest occurred in the heart, it is necessary to carry out an artificial massage without delay.

Treatment of heart failure can be carried out both conservatively and surgically.

With conservative treatment, patients are assigneddrug therapy and diet therapy, which allows you to rationally organize meals with heart failure. Usually, for each patient, a diet with heart failure is made individually, taking into account his state of health and the clinical picture of the available cardiovascular pathologies.

Drug therapy is carried out with the help of such groups of medicines as:

  • diuretics (diuretics for heart failure are prescribed to eliminate stagnant phenomena in the body);
  • ACE inhibitors (increase the effect of diuretics, lower blood pressure, improve heart function);
  • beta-blockers (are included in the treatment of dyspnea in heart failure due to the fact that lower oxygen fasting and improve heart function);
  • antithrombotic drugs (these drugs for heart failure are used to prevent the development of blood clots);
  • cardiac glycosides (help the heart muscle pump more blood, help treat edema in heart failure by improving diuresis).

It is important to note that in the initial phase of developmentpathology, in addition to diet therapy and the above medication, quite often used and various folk methods of treatment of heart failure. For example, to increase the contractility of the heart and normalize the pulse, tinctures and decoctions of foxfish and dried lily of the lily of the valley are used, and for the treatment of edema of the legs in heart failure, special therapeutic baths are often used, with the addition of various herbal preparations and sea salt.

If conservative methods of treatment are ineffective, medical experts resort to prompt intervention.