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THE BEST CARDIOLOGISTS IN YELAHANKA Aortic regurgitation The incompetent aortic valve allows regurgitation of blood from the aorta to the left ventricle during diastole for as long as the aortic diastolic pressure exceeds the left ventricular diastolic pressure. Symptoms: Occur in the late stages of disease and include exertional dyspnoea, fatigue, palpitations (hyperdynamic circulation) and exertional angina. General signs: Marfan’s syndrome may be obvious. The pulse and blood pressure: The pulse is characteristically collapsing; there may be a wide pulse pressure. The neck: Prominent carotid pulsations (Corrigan’s sign). Palpation: The apex beat is characteristically displaced and hyperkinetic. A diastolic thrill may be felt at the left sternal edge when the patient sits up and breathes out. Auscultation): A2 (the aortic component of the second heart sound) may be soft; a decrescendo high-pitched diastolic murmur beginning immediately after the second heart sound and extending for a variable time into diastole—it is loudest at the third and fourth left intercostal spaces; a systolic ejection murmur is usually present (due to associated aortic stenosis or to torrential flow across a normal diameter aortic valve). Signs indicating severe chronic aortic regurgitation: Collapsing pulse; wide pulse pressure; long decrescendo diastolic murmur; left ventricular S3 (third heart sound); soft A2; signs of left ventricular failure. Causes of chronic aortic regurgitation: (i) Rheumatic (rarely the only murmur in this case), congenital; (ii) aortic root dilatation—Marfan’s syndrome, dissecting aneurysm. 8• THE PATIENT WITH A MURMUR 305 a b Valve cusps often thickened and calcified Left ventricle may be hypertrophied Ascending aorta may be dilated Systole Diastole S1 A2 P2 S1 Ejection click (Suggests congenital AS) Normal Mild S1 S1 Moderate S1 P2 A2 S1 Severe Reversed S2 Single (S2)
POPULAR CARDIOLOGIST IN KATTIGENAHALLI, BANGALORE Cyanotic congenital heart disease Some of the more common cyanotic lesions are discussed below. There are, however, a number of problems common to patients with cyanotic heart disease. 1 Erythrocytosis. Chronic cyanosis causes an increase in red cell numbers as a way of increasing oxygen carrying capacity. The platelet count is sometimes reduced and the white cell count normal. The increased blood viscosity associated with the high red cell mass causes a slight increase in the risk of stroke.37 Most patients have a stable elevated haemoglobin level, but venesection is recommended if this is greater than 20 g/dL and the haematocrit is greater than 65%. Levels as high as this can be associated with the hyperviscosity syndrome: headache, fatigue and difficulty concentrating. Recurrent venesection can cause iron depletion and the production of microcytic red cells, which are stiffer than normal cells and so increase viscosity further. 2 Bleeding. Reduced platelet numbers, abnormal platelet function and clotting factor deficiencies mean these patients have an increased risk of haemorrhage. The most dangerous problem is pulmonary haemorrhage but bleeding from the gums and menorrhagia are more common. The use of anticoagulation must be restricted to those with a strong indication for treatment. 3 Gallstones. Chronic cyanosis and increased haem turnover are associated with an increased incidence of pigment gallstones. 4 Renal dysfunction and gout. Congestion of the renal glomeruli is associated with a reduced glomerular filtration rate and proteinuria. This and the increased turnover of red cells lead to urate accumulation and gout. 5 Pulmonary hypertension. Lesions associated with increased flow through the pulmonary circulation (e.g. a large atrial septal defect) can lead to a reactive rise in pulmonary arterial resistance. This is more likely to occur if the left to right shunt is large. Eventually these pulmonary vascular changes become irreversible, pulmonary pressures equal or exceed systemic pressures, and central cyanosis occurs because the intra-cardiac shunt reverses (Eisenmenger’s syndrome). Flow is now from right to left. There is then no benefit in attempting to correct the underlying cardiac abnormality. Earlier and more successful treatment of children with congenital heart disease has reduced the number of patients with this inexorable disease. Careful management of these conditions can nevertheless improve patients’ symptoms and survival. Reasonable exercise tolerance is usually maintained into adult life for most patients but progressive deterioration then occurs. Haemorrhagic complications, especially haemoptysis, are common. Thrombotic stroke, cerebral abscess and pulmonary infarction can also occur.
THE BEST HEART SPECIALISTS IN BANGALORE Angioplasty Balloon dilatation of coronary artery stenoses was first performed in the late 1970s by Andreas Grunzig. The technique has undergone many refinements and is now widely used for the treatment of angina not responding to medical treatment. Angioplasty has not been shown to improve the prognosis of patients with stable angina. Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) has similarly not been shown to prolong life for most stable angina patients. However, both treatments are very successful in relieving the symptoms of angina. The COURAGE Trial compared optimal medical treatment of angina with angioplasty but excluded patients with symptoms refractory to medical treatment.1 Not surprisingly, this group of stable mild angina patients had a similar outcome with angioplasty and medical treatment. The trial suggests that compared with optimal medical treatment, angioplasty is a safe and slightly more effective treatment for stable angina. Patients can make an informed choice between these two treatments. The majority of patients treated with angioplasty in Australia have acute coronary syndromes and here there is good evidence of prognostic benefit with angioplasty compared with medical treatment. In many centres one-, two- and complicated three-vessel disease are managed this way. It has been shown to be as effective as coronary surgery for these patients but at the price of a higher rate of re-intervention. This is because the greatest limitation of angioplasty is the rate of restenosis in vessels that have been dilated. Restenosis
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The use of invasive hemodynamic monitoring is based on the following principal factors: 1. Difficulty in interpreting clinical and radiographic findings of pulmonary congestion even after a thorough review of noninvasive studies such as an echo-cardiogram. 2. Need for identifying noncardiac causes of arterial hypotension, particularly hypovolemia. 3. Possible contribution of reduced ventricular compliance to impaired hemodynamics, requiring judicious adjustment of intravascular volume to optimize left ventricular filling pressure. 4. Difficulty in assessing the severity and sometimes even determining the presence of lesions such as mitral regurgitation and ventricular septal defect when the cardiac output or the systemic pressures are depressed. 5. Establishing a baseline of hemodynamic measurements and guiding therapy in patients with clinically apparent pulmonary edema or cardiogenic shock. 6. Underestimation of systemic arterial pressure by the cuff method in patients with intense vasoconstriction. The prognosis and the clinical status of patients with STEMI relate to both the cardiac output and the pulmonary artery wedge pressure. Patients
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