Alcoholic cardiomyopathy is a disease in which the chronic long-term heavy use of
In chemistry, alcohol is an organic compound that carries at least one hydroxyl functional group (−OH) bound to a Saturated and unsaturated compounds, saturated carbon atom. The term alcohol originally referred to the primary alcohol ethan ...
Ethanol (also called ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol, drinking alcohol, or simply alcohol) is an organic
Organic may refer to:
* Organic, of or relating to an organism, a living entity
* Organic, of or relating to an anatomical organ (anatomy), ...
) leads to
Heart failure (HF), also known as congestive heart failure (CHF) and (congestive) cardiac failure (CCF), is a set of manifestations caused by the failure of the heart
The heart is a cardiac muscle, muscular Organ (biology), organ in mo ...
Alcoholic cardiomyopathy is a type of
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a condition in which the Cardiomegaly, heart becomes enlarged and cannot pump blood effectively. Symptoms vary from none to feeling tired, pedal edema, leg swelling, and shortness of breath. It may also result in che ...
typically found in people with
alcohol use disorder
Alcoholism is, broadly, any drinking of alcohol (drug), alcohol that results in significant Mental health, mental or physical health problems. Alcoholism is not a recognized diagnostic entity. Predominant diagnostic classifications are alcoho ...
. Due to the direct toxic effects of alcohol on heart muscle, the heart is unable to pump blood efficiently, leading to heart failure. It can affect other parts of the body if the heart failure is severe. It is most common in males between the ages of 35 and 50.
Signs and symptoms
Signs and symptoms presented by the occurrence of alcoholic cardiomyopathy are the result of the heart failing and usually occur after the disease has progressed to an advanced stage. Therefore, the symptoms have a lot in common with other forms of
Cardiomyopathy is a group of diseases that affect the heart muscle
Cardiac muscle (also called heart muscle or myocardium) is one of three types of vertebrate
Vertebrates () comprise all species of animal
Animals (also called Metaz ...
. These symptoms can include the following:
* Ankle, feet, and leg swelling (
Edema, also spelled oedema, and also known as fluid retention, dropsy, hydropsy and swelling, is the build-up of fluid in the body's tissue
Tissue may refer to:
* Tissue (biology), an ensemble of similar cells that together carry out a ...)
* Overall swelling
* Loss of appetite
Anorexia is a decreased appetite
Appetite is the desire to eat food
Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism
In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organis ...
* Shortness of breath ( dyspnea
Shortness of breath (SOB), also known as dyspnea (BrE
British English (BrE) is the standard dialect
A standard language (also standard variety, standard dialect, and standard) is a language variety that has undergone substantial codificat ...), especially with activity
* Breathing difficulty while lying down
* Fatigue, weakness, faintness
* Decreased alertness or concentration
* Cough containing mucus, or pink, frothy material
* Decreased urine output ( oliguria
Oliguria or hypouresis is the low output of urine specifically more than 80 ml/day but less than 400ml/day.Boon et al, Davidson's Principles & Practice of Medicine (20th Ed), p475 The decreased output of urine may be a sign of dehydration, kidney f ...)
* Need to urinate at night ( nocturia
Nocturia is defined by the International Continence Society (ICS) as “the complaint that the individual has to wake at night one or more times for voiding (''i.e. to urinate'').” The term is derived from Latin
Latin (, or , ) is a classical ...)
* Heart palpitations (irregular heart beat)
* Rapid pulse ( tachycardia
Tachycardia, also called tachyarrhythmia, is a heart rate that exceeds the normal resting rate. In general, a resting heart rate over 100 beats per minute is accepted as tachycardia in adults. Heart rates above the resting rate may be normal (s ...)
Abnormal heart sounds, murmurs,
Electrocardiography is the process of producing an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG). It is an electrogram of the heart
The heart is a cardiac muscle, muscular Organ (biology), organ in most animals, which pumps blood through the blood ... abnormalities, and enlarged heart on chest x-ray may lead to the diagnosis. Echocardiogram
An echocardiography, echocardiogram, cardiac echo or simply an echo, is an Medical ultrasound, ultrasound of the heart.
It is a type of medical imaging of the heart, using standard ultrasound or Doppler echocardiography, Doppler ultrasound.
Echoc ... abnormalities and cardiac catheterization
Cardiac catheterization (heart cath) is the insertion of a catheter
Medicine is the science
Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge
Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understan ... or angiogram
Angiography or arteriography is a medical imaging
Medical imaging is the technique and process of imaging the interior of a body for clinical analysis and medical intervention, as well as visual representation of the function of some organs o ... to rule out coronary artery blockages, along with a history of heavy alcohol use can confirm the diagnosis.
Treatment for alcoholic cardiomyopathy involves lifestyle changes, including complete abstinence from alcohol use, a low sodium diet, and fluid restriction, as well as medications. Medications may include
Angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) are a class of medication used primarily for the treatment of hypertension, high blood pressure and heart failure. They work by causing relaxation of blood vessels as well as a decrease i ..., beta blockers
Beta blockers (beta-blockers, β-blockers, etc.) are a class of medications that are predominantly used to manage cardiac arrhythmia, abnormal heart rhythms, and to protect the heart from a second heart attack (myocardial infarction) after a firs ..., and diuretics
A diuretic () is any substance that promotes diuresis, the increased production of urine
Urine is a liquid by-product of metabolism in humans and in many other animals. Urine flows from the kidneys through the ureters to the urinary bladder. U ... which are commonly used in other forms of cardiomyopathy to reduce the strain on the heart. Persons with congestive heart failure may be considered for surgical insertion of an ICD
The International Classification of Diseases (ICD) is a globally used diagnostic
Diagnosis is the identification of the nature and cause of a certain phenomenon. Diagnosis is used in many different academic discipline, disciplines, with variations ... or a pacemaker
A cardiac pacemaker (or artificial pacemaker, so as not to be confused with the natural pacemaker of the heart
The heart is a muscle, muscular Organ (anatomy), organ in most animals, which pumps blood through the blood vessels of the cir ... which can improve heart function. In cases where the heart failure is irreversible and worsening, heart transplant
A heart transplant, or a cardiac transplant, is a surgical transplant procedure performed on patients with end-stage heart failure
Heart failure (HF), also known as congestive heart failure (CHF), (congestive) cardiac failure (CCF), and decomp ... may be considered.
Treatment will possibly prevent the heart from further deterioration, and the cardiomyopathy is largely reversible if complete abstinence from alcohol is maintained.
Alcohol and health