Cardiomyopathy is used to describe a disease of the muscle of the heart. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy also includes cells in the muscle of the heart that are abnormal. One of the dangers of this illness, and something that can make it very deadly, is the fact that many people who have it actually have no symptoms of any problem with the heart or may have symptoms that are so mild they are easily missed.
However, it is always important to take notice of these things, especially as typically they do tend to worsen over time. If you think it is something that you might have you should go and see a doctor who will be able to have you checked out. Some of the symptoms (but certainly not all of them) include:
Feeling Lightheaded and fainting
Having shortness of breath
Pain in the chest and palpitations (heart beating irregularly)
These are just a few of the things to look out for and certainly not an exhaustive list, so it is important to get medical attention if you think that you may have something wrong, especially where the heart is concerned.
The majority of cases of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are caused by genetics. These are genes that can often be passed down from one generation to another, so if a close relative has it, it is even more important for you to be checked out yourself. Other things that cause it are lifestyle factors, such as smoking, other illnesses and a poor diet.
There is a lot of research being done into this illness, such as these bridging studies www.richmondpharmacology.com/specialist-services/bridging-studies – looking for new ways to treat it, as well as effective ways to diagnose this is something that will help many people now and in the future and could save many lives. If you are suspected of having it, there are lots of different types of tests that can look at it more closely, from MRI scans to X Rays of the chest.
Once you have a diagnosis, there are things that can be done currently to help treat it, these include drugs like beta blockers, valve replacement and even a heart transplant in severe cases. As long as the illness is found and managed well, there is no reason why the life expectancy should be lower.« Back