What are other kinds of cardiomyopathy?

Bijoy K. Khandheria, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Congestive (dilated) cardiomyopathy is the most common form of the cardiomyopathies, which affect the heart’s ability to pump blood. The exact cause is not known. Factors that may be associated with it are high alcohol intake, nutritional deficiencies, electrolyte or hormonal disorders, viral diseases, coronary artery disease, or heredity. The main feature of congestive cardiomyopathy is that the muscle fibers of the heart are damaged. Therefore, the heart has trouble pumping blood to the body as well as it once did. Because the heart has to work so hard to pump the blood, the heart muscle becomes thinned and stretched.
In congestive cardiomyopathy, the heart becomes enlarged and weakened and is unable to pump effectively. Symptoms of heart failure develop.In congestive cardiomyopathy, the heart becomes enlarged and weakened and is unable to pump effectively. Symptoms of heart failure develop.
In dilated cardiomyopathy, the heart muscle weakens and the heart becomes enlarged. As the heart becomes stretched, its lower chambers (ventricles) are less able to pump blood efficiently. Eventually, the heart is not able to pump enough blood to the body and the lungs become congested - a condition called heart failure. Abnormal heart rhythms may also result when the heart becomes enlarged. 
Cardiomyopathy is a heart condition that impairs the heart's ability to pump blood.

There are several different kinds of cardiomyopathies:
  • Valvular cardiomyopathy refers to dilated cardiomyopathy. Dilated cardiomyopathy means that the left ventricle of the heart is enlarged and therefore less powerful than the left ventricle of a healthy heart.
  • Dilated cardiomyopathy is a disorder of heart muscle that causes the heart to become larger (dilate). It primarily affects the muscles of the ventricles, which are the chambers of the heart that pump the blood to the lungs and the rest of the body. The enlarged ventricles cannot pump blood normally, so the body does not get enough blood for its needs. This causes heart failure, which can lead to death. Although dilated cardiomyopathy can develop at any age, it is most frequently found in people between the ages of 20 and 60 years.

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