Diagnosing and Treating an Enlarged Heart

In continuation of our last blog on what is an enlarged heart, today we would discuss ” how to diagnose an enlarged heart and treatment options for the same

Enlarged Heart, treatment options
Enlarged Heart, treatment options
Early diagnosis is critical to managing an Enlarged Heart.
Upon a physical examination, a cardiologist may hear a murmur in the heart, unusual heartbeats, water retention in the legs, abdomen, fluid retention in the lungs.
After a physical examination, a few tests that may be carried out are :
  • Angiogram or catheterization, checks for blockages in the heart. A flexible tube is inserted via the groin, dye injected and pictures of the heart taken to check for blockages and heart function. In case of blockages, stenting or angioplasty is carried out at the same time.
  • ECG uses electrodes to detect heart activity.
  • Echo, uses sound waves to detect heart activity and take pictures of the heart.
  • MRI is used to take pictures of the heart and blood vessels to detect anomalies.
  • CT Scan is also used to take pictures of the arteries in the heart and is often used for patients with pacemakers and other implanted devices.
  • Stress Echo: The patient is made to exercise and then heart tests are administered. Along with ECG, Stress Echo shows heart rate, rhythm, and activity.

 

  • Some of the common treatment options are:

 

  • Angioplasty or Stenting are often carried out when blockages or fat, calcium deposits are found in the arteries.Stents can be bare metal or drug-eluting which help open up the arteries.
  • CABG or an open heart surgery in case of multiple blockages also help.
  • Heart Valve surgeries, such as single valve repair,  DVR( Double valve replacement ),  MVR(Mitral valve replacement, Mital valve repair), VSD, ASD  help take care of valve-related heart problems which impair blood flow and lead to an enlarged heart over time.
  • VAD or Ventricular assist devices, help in heart failure by helping a weak heart pump blood. VAD can be, LVAD( left ventricular assist device) or RVAD( Right ventricular assist device). ICD combo devices and Pacemakers also help weak hearts or a heart with impaired function.
  • Heart Transplant is the very last option when all else fails to support patients with extreme heart failure.
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