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Signs and Symptoms

The most common causes of heart failure include high blood pressure, heart attack and coronary artery disease. But other conditions and factors can lead to heart failure as well.

Many people who have heart failure will have symptoms that include:

  • Shortness of breath (even when doing simple tasks like dressing or walking a flight of stairs)
  • Swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, abdomen, or veins in the neck
  • Extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • Feelings of weakness
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Fast weight gain, or rapid fluctuations in weight
  • Pressure or heaviness in the chest when lying flat

Late in the disease, people may notice:

  • A lack of appetite or that they feel full more quickly
  • Weight loss (cardiac cachexia)
  • Last Edited 09/16/2016