Doctor insights on:
Medicine For Hypertrophic Obstructive Cardiomyopathy
Heart disease: Obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetic disorder that is one of the leading causes of sudden cardiac death in young people, particularly athletes. It is quite rare, but can be devastating in its ability to produce fatal arrhythmias. It is also a serious cause of heart failure due to decreased blood flow through the aortic valve to due obstruction of flow by the ventricular septum. ...Read more
Hypertrophy is an increase in size of an organ or tissue, or a particular part of the body. Examples include muscle hypertrophy due to lifting weights, ventricular hypertrophy (enlargement of a ventricle of the heart) due to high blood pressure or other heart disorders, or prostatic hypertrophy (enlargement of ...Read more
Thick heart muscle: Hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy is an abnormal thickening of the heart muscle, particularly of the ventricles. Often the septum, the wall between the ventricles, is much thicker than the other walls. When the heart contracts, this abnormally thick septum creates a narrow area that can block, or "obstruct", the flow of blood out of the left ventricle. ...Read more
Echocardiogram: Echocardiogram is the definitive test for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a disease whose greatest risk is that of fatal heart rhythm disturbance, regardless of whether it is obstructive or not. The presence of this abnormality on echocardiogram usually requires the placement of a defibrillator to prevent sudden cardiac death. ...Read more
Several: Some patients may be asymptomatic, but others have symptoms that range from exertional fatigue to overt anginal chest pain, to exertional shortness of breath, to overt heart failure with severe shortness of breath on low levels of exertion. The extreme involves syncope from near fatal or fatal ventricular arrhythmias, to fatal or non-fatal myocardial infarction (heart attack). ...Read more
Knowledge=power: Most important is to understand what this diagnosis means, and what the risk is to you as an individual. The manifestation of this genetic abnormality is extremely variable, so you cannot assume what you read about applies to your case. A cardiologist with experience in this disease can advise you on your risk of heart arrhythmia, as well as exercise that should be safe, or avoided, in your case. ...Read more
Defined.: Most often the portion of the heart between the right and left ventricles (septum) is thickened. This narrows the region below the aortic valve and causes a portion of mitral valve to be sucked into this area during ventricular ejection (emptying). As a result there is narrowing of outflow leading to obsruction. ...Read more
HOCM: We presently have no uniformly effective treatment for hocm. It is prudent to take care of your other health risk factors as much as possible and discuss forms of prudent exercise with your doctor. ...Read more
If I plan to get my medical tests done over vacation, will I need to go back for more for hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy? I want to wrap this up in one week if possible.
Yes, lifelong: Lifelong follow-up is required. It is a condition in which the heart muscle is thick, and obstruction to outflow may occur. Arrhythmias may occur as well. It is commonly inherited, first degree relatives should be screened. Patients may have severe symptoms, or no symptoms at all. It is a common cause of death in young athletes who seemed completely healthy. ...Read more
No cure: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (hcm) is a genetic disease of the heart muscle. There is no "cure" for hcm. In some cases, if there is severe obstruction to left ventricular outflow, surgery is recommended to relieve the obstruction, but the patient still has hcm. The Best care is delivered by a cardiac team with special expertise in hcm. ...Read more
I went to an online symptom checker. It said I might have hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy. What do doctors say are the most common symptoms?
Really?: That's a tricky diagnosis for any entity that has not seen or examined you. The symptoms of hocm are quite common (breathlessness, chest discomfort, palpitations) as are the signs. If hocm is even a remote possibility, you best be seen by a cardiologist to confirm (or more likely, deny) the diagnosis by physical examination and an echocardiogram with/without physiologic maneuvers (he'll know!). ...Read more
Yes!: At least until you talk to your cardiologist and get their evaluation and opinion. Hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy is associated with sudden cardiac death during maximal exercise, like during competitive sports. If you have been given this diagnosis you should be seeing a cardiologist that specializes in this condition. ...Read more
Depends: On how advanced it is and if you have symptoms with activity. Medication management can keep you asymptomatic for a while but being followed by a cardiologist is extremely important. They will be able to guide your therapy and will know when and if its time to intervene surgically. ...Read more
What to do if I have been diagnosed with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy, should I stop sports?
HOCM: We do not recommend competitive sports in patients with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy. You should discuss your status along with do's and don't s with your cardiologist. ...Read more
Yes: This condition is a major cause of sudden death in exercise / sports. Certainly follow your doctors guidance with this condition. ...Read more
I was diagnosed with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy. Does that affect my sports-playing abilities?
Yes: Current guidelines recommend that individuals with hcm refrain from participation in competitive sports. However, patients with hcm can participate in low to moderate intensity activities to promote good health. Discuss this carefully with your cardiologist. ...Read more
Can a drug overdose lead to death by hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or is this condition always genetic?
Cardiomyopathy: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetically inherited condition. Having said that, a person using drugs could die from drug use and have this condition as well. It can predispose to abnormal heart rhythms which can be fatal and drug use can elicit abnormal heart rhythms. ...Read more
HCM: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a condition in which the heart muscle becomes thick, and obstruction to outflow may occur. Arrhythmias may occur as well. It is commonly inherited, first degree relatives should be screened. Patients may have severe symptoms, or no symptoms at all. It is a common cause of death in young athletes who seemed completely healthy. ...Read more
Genetic defect: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is caused by a mutation in one of several genes that codes for cardiac contractile proteins (sarcomeric proteins.) typically, these are inherited in an autosomal dominant pattern. Spontaneous mutations do occur. Over 50% of people have an affected parent, but disease expression is variable. ...Read more
HCM: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy doesn't occur in any particular frequency in one group of people over another. It is relatively uncommon, being seen in about 1 in 500 people in the general population. However, it occurs in a hereditary form more than 50% of the time and therefore relatives of people with this disease should be screened for it. ...Read more
Not acquired: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is caused by mutations of the proteins that make up the contractile apparatus of the heart, in general. That means it is not something you "get." generally, if you have the genetic makeup to cause hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, you should have evidence (abnormal echocardiogram) by 43 years of age, so if you have a normal echocardiogram you aren't going to develop hcm. ...Read more
See cardiologist: Interested to know why you have this particular concern I assume there is a family history? In any event, a screening ECG will be helpful, as these are generally markedly abnormal in the setting of HCM. An echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) can also assess for hypertrophy, and there may be genetic testing available if another family member has been diagnosed and a gene identified. ...Read more
Hypertrophic: Most people with HCM are advised to avoid playing competitive sports, with the possible exception of some low-intensity sports (eg, golf, billiards). Certain recreational sports are also not advised. ...Read more
Hocm is a condition of local muscular obstruction to the outflow of blood from the heart. It is part of the spectrum of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy which is abnormally thick heart ...Read more
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