Lifestyle Changes Up to half of patients hospitalized for heart failure are back in the hospital within 6 months. Many people return because of lifestyle factors, such as poor diet, failure to comply with medications, and social isolation. Rehabilitation Programs that offer intensive follow-up to ensure that the patient complies with lifestyle changes and medication regimens at home can reduce rehospitalization and improve survival. Patients without available rehabilitation programs should seek support from local and national heart associations and groups. A strong emotional support network is also important. Monitoring Weight Changes Patients should weigh themselves each morning and keep a record. Any changes are important: A sudden increase in weight of more than 2 - 3 pounds may indicate fluid accumulation and should prompt an immediate call to the doctor. Rapid wasting weight loss over a few months is a very serious sign and may indicate the need for surgical intervention. Dietary Factors
Medications Many different medications are used in the treatment of heart failure. They include: Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors Angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs) Beta blockers Diuretics Aldosterone blockers Digitalis Hydralazine and nitrates Statins Aspirin and warfarin ACE Inhibitors Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors are among the most important drugs for treating patients with heart failure. ACE inhibitors open blood vessels and decrease the workload of the heart. They are used to treat high blood pressure but can also help improve heart and lung muscle function. ACE inhibitors are particularly important for patients with diabetes, because they also help slow progression of kidney disease. Brands and Indications . ACE inhibitors are used to treat Stage A high-risk conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetic nerve disorders (neuropathy). They are also used to treat Stage B patients who have had a heart attack or who have left ventricular syst...
Last night as I was sleeping
I dreamt—marvelous error!—
that I had a beehive
here inside my heart.
And the golden bees
were making white combs
and sweet honey
from my old failures .
-Anthony Machado, “Last Night as I Was Sleeping”
Sweetness and honey: two words that might elevate bloodsugars of diabetics everywhere just by imagining them. Yet I love this poem and these lines in particular. Because even though the old failures are there (and always will be), there’s comfort there, too.
Machado’s bees remind me that this is how we learn. We learn to change not by getting it right all the time, but by getting it wrong. More often than not, we learn what to do by learning what not to do (reason enough to read this and other SharePosts ). Of course, I can’t help but look at Machado’s poem through the eyes of a diabetic…a diabetic who has gotten it wrong as many times as she’s gotten it right.
You should knowAnswers to your question are meant to provide general health information but should not replace medical advice you receive from a doctor. No answers should be viewed as a diagnosis or recommended treatment for a condition. Content posted by community members does not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media, which also reserves the right to remove material deemed inappropriate.