What is Chronic Heart Failure?
The truth is that the human heart, like other muscles in the body, will lose some of its efficiency as it ages. The condition that we have come to know as chronic heart failure is something that results from additional stress and damage inflicted on the heart. Cardiovascular diseases are more deadly than they have ever been, and we are conducting clinical trials in order to help advance medicine and save more lives.
(Is this something that you would like to get involved in? Please click on the link above or give us a call at (386) 785-2400.)
Heart failure, also referred to as congestive heart failure or CHF, is a medical condition in which the heart can no longer pump blood efficiently. When people hear this term for the first time, many will mistakenly believe that this means the heart no longer functions at all. This isn’t the case.
The following lifestyle factors will put your heart at great risk over time:
- Smoking cigarettes
- Maintaining a overly sedentary lifestyle
- Being obese or overweight
- Maintaining a diet that is high in cholesterol
Complicating health problems such as high blood pressure (hypertension) and coronary artery disease can damage the heart to the point that it can’t pump blood efficiently. That means the body’s cells will become deprived of essential oxygen and nutrients carried by the blood. it’s not hard to see why the body can no longer function properly after heart failure occurs. Eventually, even the most mundane activities such as walking can become all but impossible.
Heart Failure Can be Managed
Chronic heart failure is a very serious health problem. However, it is not a death sentence. Thanks to advancements made possible in clinical trials like the ones we are conducting at our premier Phase I facility, there are many people who are able to live a full life despite their symptoms.
If you have been diagnosed with congestive heart failure, then it’s very important that you make several crucial adjustments to your lifestyle. There are also a number of heart failure medications which can be used to manage some of the worst symptoms of this disease. You’ll work closely with your primary doctor and cardiologist in order to develop a treatment plan that adequately addresses your condition.
The Makings of a Healthy Heart
A healthy heart is a strong muscle that is slightly larger than your average balled up fist. The muscle contracts in order to keep oxygen and nutrient-rich blood pumping through the body. If you know your anatomy, then you already know that the heart has four chambers:
- The upper chambers are called atria (plural of atrium)
- The lower chambers are known as the ventricles
As the blood moves through the circulatory system, it goes from the lungs to the left atrium, then down into the corresponding ventricle and then carried out to the rest of the body. The blood is eventually depleted of oxygen as it makes it way back into the right atrium and back to the lungs via the right ventricle.
The entire system relies on the precise timing of the contractions within the four chambers. The muscle cannot function properly if they are not beating in sync.
Advanced Stage Heart Failure
There are more than 5 million Americans who are living with heart failure, but about 10 percent eventually develop advanced heart failure. This essentially means that their symptoms can no longer be managed with more conventional therapies and treatment strategies. These patients struggle with their chronic symptoms even when they are not moving or performing any activities.
The American College of Cardiology has set up a staging system for congestive heart failure patients on a scale of A-to-D. Those with advanced symptoms have progressed to stage D. This is the grading scale that is also recognized by national organizations like the American Heart Association.
While the earlier stages can be managed with the proper mix of healthy lifestyle habits and medication, the disease can progress and make the heart increasingly more feeble. Thus doctors and cardiologists are forced to prescribe even more complex treatments and therapies. As hard as it can be, it’s very important to remain vocal about the type of treatment you wish to receive for your condition.
Do You Want to Enroll in a Heart Failure Clinical Trial?
If you would like to volunteer for a chronic heart failure clinical trial, our experienced staff will be available to answer any of your questions and get you enrolled in the best study. For those who have never participated in a clinical trial before, we highly recommend spending some time in our participant’s resource section. We understand that this experience can be confusing at first, but these pages should help answer many of your questions.
Participants will be compensated for time and travel, and any study related care. The following are all provided free of charge:
- Physical examinations
- Laboratory services
- Study related medication
We are currently conducting clinical studies targeted towards a wide array of medical conditions at our state-of-the-art facility here in DeLand. You don’t have to be living with a condition such as chronic heart failure in order to qualify for one of our clinical trials. If you are interested in helping us advance modern medicine and save more lives, please give us a call today at (386) 785-2400.