Most do not understand what is meant by Chronic Heart Failure (often referred to as Heart Disease). Chronic Heart Failure is not the heart no longer beating such as might be the case with a heart attack. Instead, it is the decreasing flow of the amount of blood into the arteries and throughout our bodies as the heart muscle simply wears out. Heart failure happens when the heart cannot pump enough blood and oxygen to support other organs in your body. Heart failure is a serious condition, but it does not mean that the heart has stopped beating.
Hearts fail as a result of a number of causes. While the most common are high blood pressure and coronary artery disease it can also be the result of obesity and diabetes as well as heart attacks. As a result the heart has to work harder to provide enough blood flow. This increase in energy uses more CoQ10 as additional energy is required. (9)
As the heart attempts to provide the needed blood flow under stressful conditions it gets bigger, than flabby as it squeezes less blood out with each contraction. As a result smaller amounts of blood are provided throughout the body.
With the reduced blood flow there is a negative effect on the organs in the body. The kidneys, the lungs and liver are especially dependent upon a nourishing blood supply, not to mention the heart itself. Typical symptoms of heart failure include shortness of breath (even with normal daily activities), having trouble breathing when lying down and lower back swelling as well as in the lower extremities. Often there is a significant gain in weight as well as a general feeling of fatigue and weakness.
Hospitalization is often the result of a worsening of the symptoms including potential life threatening heart arrhythmia and pulmonary edema (abnormal buildup of fluid).
Typically the symptoms get worse with hospitalization becoming more frequent as do the life threatening arrhythmia and edema. The treatment of people with heart failure is not often successful and they may die in a couple of years.
Almost six million people in the United States are affected by heart failure. Heart failure causes, or contributes to over 3000,000 deaths each year. Generally half who are diagnosed with heart failure die within five years.(3)
(3) http://www.cdc.gov/dhdsp/data_statistics/fact_sheets/fs_heart_failure.htm March 2014
(9) Mortensen SA, Vadhanavikit S, Muratsu K, Folkers K. CoenzymeQ10: clinical benefits with biochemical correlates suggesting a scientific breakthrough in the management of chronic heart failure. Int J Tissue React. 1990,12(3):155-62.
(44) http://umm.edu/programs/heart/services/conditions/heart-failure. March 2014