Congestive heart failure, also called heart failure, is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough oxygenated blood to meet the needs of the body’s other organs. Heart failure affects approximately five million adults in the United States.
The most common symptoms are shortness of breath, weight gain, swelling of the lower extremities and fatigue. Many conditions that cause heart failure result in irreversible damage and, in some cases, may necessitate a heart transplant.
Why Choose The Ohio State University Medical Center?
The Ohio State University Medical Center has the largest heart failure program in central Ohio; we are the only Center performing implantation of artificial heart pumps and heart transplantation. We completed our first heart transplant in 1986 and have the only adult cardiac transplant center in central Ohio. Our team of researchers was among the first in the nation to evaluate the use of cyclosporine, a drug that suppresses the immune system and dramatically improves the success of organ transplantation.
Ohio State gained prominence by becoming the fourth institution in the country certified to implant the temporary CardioWest™ Total Artificial Heart, which serves as a bridge to transplant for the most critically ill patients. We also offer one of the largest Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) programs in the country.
Our heart failure team is comprised of:
- Heart failure cardiologists
- Cardiac surgeons
- Nursing coordinators
- Nurse practitioners
- Social workers
- Clinical psychologists
Ohio State's Medical Center has a long-standing reputation as a magnet for nationally recognized leaders in cardiovascular medicine.
What Is Congestive Heart Failure?
Congestive heart failure is usually a sign of an underlying heart problem. In addition to affecting the heart’s pumping efficiency, it interferes with normal kidney function. When the kidneys cannot properly eliminate sodium and waste from the body, the body retains excess fluid.
The severity of the condition and the symptoms you experience depend on how much of the heart’s pumping capacity has been lost.
What Causes Congestive Heart Failure?
Congestive heart failure can be caused by: