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What are the common treatments for cardiomyopathy?

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Quick Answer

The common treatment options for cardiomyopathy, or heart muscle disease, are dependent on whether the patient has hypertrophic, dilated or restrictive cardiomyopathy. Treatments may involve changes in lifestyle, different medications, surgical and non-surgical procedures and a heart transplant. In some cases, cardiomyopathy patients who do not present any symptoms may not require any type of treatment, states the National Institute of Health's National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

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Cardiomyopathy is an abnormality of the heart muscle in which it can become larger, thicker or the ventricles may get stiffer. Dilated cardiomyopathy involves the dilation of the heart muscle that leads to an enlarged heart chamber. Symptoms of dilated cardiomyopathy, such as fluid buildup, hypertension and a fast heart rate, may be treated with prescribed medications, notes Mayo Clinic. The surgical implantation of either a cardioverter defibrillator or pacemaker is another possible option.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy occurs when there is thickening of the heart muscles located between the ventricles. This can cause symptoms such as chest pain and arrhythmia. For regulating heart rhythm, medicines may be prescribed. A septal myectomy procedure to excise sections of the thickened muscle may be necessary. A non-surgical procedure called septal ablation may be useful to remove thickened muscle through an injection of alcohol into the affected heart area.

Restrictive cardiomyopathy involves a stiffening of the heart ventricles that can cause heart failure, states Cleveland Clinic. To treat this condition, doctors can recommend lifestyle changes and medications for any symptoms. In cases where patients have severe heart failure, a heart transplant can be an option.

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