Cardiomyopathy is related to all of the different diseases within the heart muscle where the heart becomes thick and enlarged as well as inflexible, according to the U.S. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. A person who has cardiomyopathy will find that as the condition worsens, the heart may go into heart failure, experience arrhythmias and have valve problems.
The most common types of cardiomyopathy are hypertrophic, restrictive, dilated and arrhythmogenic, reports the U.S. National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute. These diseases are sometimes inherited, but they can also occur throughout life. For those people who do not experience symptoms with the disease, treatment is not necessary. However, for those people who have symptoms ranging from mild to severe, there will need to be immediate treatment. Anyone who is experiencing symptoms related to cardiomyopathy should see a doctor immediately for diagnostic testing.
The treatment for cardiomyopathy involves medicine, lifestyle changes including diet and exercise changes, possible surgery and implanted devices. Unfortunately, there are many different types of causes for cardiomyopathy and its related heart conditions, reports Mayo Clinic. These causes range from long-term high blood pressure, heart valve problems, chronic rapid heart rate, nutritional deficiencies, pregnancy, too much alcohol, chemotherapy drugs, cocaine or steroids, iron buildup in the heart, genetic conditions and viral infections, according to Mayo Clinic.