What Are Some Treatment Options for Congestive Heart Failure?

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The main treatment options for congestive heart failure are diuretic medications, heart medications like ACE inhibitors or beta blockers, and lifestyle changes. End-stage congestive heart failure patients may require more aggressive treatments including an implanted pump or heart transplantation, according to MedicineNet.

The goal of administering diuretic medications is to decrease fluid levels throughout the body. This relieves pressure on the heart since it doesn’t have to work as hard to circulate blood through blood vessels. Common diuretic medications, also known as water pills, include furosemide (Lasix), bumetanide (Bumex) and hydrochlorothiazide, notes MedicineNet.

Heart-specific medications make the heart pump more efficiently and increase cardiac output so the heart can meet the energy needs of the body. ACE inhibitors and angiotension receptor blockers are often used with other drugs to improve cardiac performance. MedicineNet explains that beta blockers reduce heart rate by blocking the effects of norepinephrine and epinephrine, and reduce blood pressure by dilating blood vessels.

While lifestyle modifications are most important in preventing heart problems, they can also benefit patients with diagnosed congestive heart failure. Weight loss, exercise, smoking cessation, and controlling high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes are all recommended tools for heart patients, according to MedicineNet.