Heart Failure

Heart failure is a serious, lifelong condition that requires careful management.

Learn more about Heart Failure

If you have—or think you have—heart failure, it’s normal to feel scared. But you’re not alone. More than 5.7 million Americans have heart failure.

Contrary to how it sounds, heart failure does not mean that your heart has stopped beating. It refers to a number of conditions that can affect the way the heart works and/or its structure. Over time, heart failure makes it harder and harder for the heart to pump enough blood and oxygen to meet your body’s needs. That’s why most people with heart failure get short of breath, especially when they are active. Even climbing the stairs or carrying groceries may leave you winded. Of course, your symptoms will depend on the type of heart failure you have.

Because it’s a lifelong condition, you must take an active role in your care to stay well. The more informed and equipped you are to manage heart failure, the better you may feel. Use this condition center to learn more about heart failure. You can also chat online with other people like you, keep up with the latest research, and get tips to help you feel your best.

Heart Failure News & Events

CardioSmart News

Virtual Health Programs Could Improve Global Health

May 22, 2016
An online challenge promotes physical activity and weight loss in over 60 countries.
CardioSmart News

Open Heart Surgery Boosts Survival in Heart Failure Patients

May 11, 2016

Despite increased risks, open heart surgery improves long-term survival in patients with heart disease and heart failure.

Heart Disease Burden Has Shifted to Southern U.S. States

May 04, 2016

The highest death rates from heart disease have shifted to the South since the 1970s.

CardioSmart News

Vitamin D Improves Cardiac Function in Heart Failure

Apr 24, 2016

Study assesses a simple and promising treatment for the 5 million Americans with heart failure.

Harmful Gut Bacteria Linked to Poorer Health Among People with Heart Failure

Mar 10, 2016
Inflammation-causing bacteria levels are higher in severe heart failure.

Beet Juice Lowers Blood Pressure and Boosts Exercise Endurance in Heart Failure Patients

Mar 08, 2016

Nitrates in beet juice may help improve blood flow and exercise ability.

Decline in Dementia Rates Over Past Three Decades

Mar 08, 2016

Study analyzed data on trends in older adults in the Framingham Heart Study.

Texting Programs Improve Medication Adherence in Patients with Chronic Disease

Feb 26, 2016
A recent study suggests that text messaging programs double the odds of medication adherence in adults with chronic disease.

Managing Heart Failure: A Program for Patients and Caregivers in Chicago

Feb 10, 2016
This series of live programs provides educational and peer-support resources on heart failure for patients and caregivers.

Heart Failure Remains a Major Challenge for Those with Congenital Heart Disease

Feb 02, 2016
People born with heart defects are living longer than ever, but heart failure remains a serious concern.

Too Little Exercise Remains a Prime Concern for Americans

Jan 18, 2016
Experts reaffirm that health benefits from exercise far outweigh risks.

Cardiac Rehab is Lifesaving for Heart Patients

Jan 10, 2016

Exercise-based rehab programs reduce risk for heart-related death by 26%.

Heart Disease Remains Top Killer in the United States

Jan 10, 2016

Heart disease accounts for 1 in 3 deaths, highlighting an urgent need for prevention and treatment.

Limiting Salt Could Harm, Not Help, Heart Failure Patients

Jan 09, 2016
Those with heart failure should work closely with their health care providers to determine what is best for their individual case.

Declines in U.S. Death Rates Have Slowed

Nov 19, 2015
Researchers measure progress on heart disease and other leading causes of death, and identify areas for improvement.

Low-Fat Diets Not the Best Weight Loss Solution

Nov 19, 2015

A review of more than 50 clinical trials comparing low- versus higher-fat diets shows no significant difference in weight loss results.

Sugary Drinks Boost Heart Failure Risk

Nov 19, 2015
Two or more sugar-sweetened drinks a day increase risk for heart failure in men, study finds.

The More Exercise the Better to Prevent Heart Failure

Nov 05, 2015
Exceeding the recommended levels of physical activity may reduce heart failure risk by up to 35%.

African-American Veterans Healthier Than White Counterparts

Oct 22, 2015

Analysis of VA data stands in contrast to health disparities in the general U.S. population.

Managing Heart Failure: A Program for Patients and Caregivers in Orlando

Oct 22, 2015

This series of live programs provides educational and peer-support resources on heart failure for patients and caregivers.

A Healthy Lifestyle in Midlife Makes for Healthier Golden Years

Oct 13, 2015

The benefits of healthy choices carry long into older adulthood.

Music Boosts Heart Health

Oct 13, 2015
Music’s effect on heart activity, blood pressure and breathing bodes well for health.

Therapy is Useful for Heart Failure Patients Experiencing Depression

Oct 13, 2015
Cognitive therapy eases depression symptoms, which improves quality of life and helps keep these patients out of the hospital.

Enter the "I am CardioSmart" Contest

Oct 05, 2015

Tell us how you are living well with heart disease for a chance to win a trip for two to Chicago in April 2016!

Longer, But Not Necessarily Healthier, Lives

Sep 25, 2015
While life expectancy continues to rise, heart disease becomes the leading cause of disability around the world.

Managing Heart Failure

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