Cardiac hypertrophy happens when the muscles of the heart thicken, according to the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine. This means that there is less room in the heart for the chambers, including the atria and the ventricles.
Cardiac hypertrophy is often caused by high blood pressure and a narrowing of the valves of the heart, claims the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine.
Symptoms of cardiac hypertrophy include chest pain or pressure after exercise or after meals, shortness of breath, tiredness, fainting, and palpitations, says WebMD. In a few patients, one symptom of cardiac hypertrophy is sudden death.