Congestive Heart Failure Essay

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Congestive Heart Failure Congestive Heart Failure Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) is a serious progressive disease. Heart failure (HF) remains a major and growing societal problem despite advances in detection and therapy. However, there is no widely accepted characterization and definition of HF, probably because of the complexity of the syndrome. This paper will discuss the health maintenance issues related to CHF and will include the etiology, pathophysiology, signs and symptoms and treatment. It will also touch on areas of patient education and the need for lifelong learning. Furthermore, the paper will also include the Visiting Nursing Association’s (VNA) role in maintaining the community’s health. Two relevant, evidenced based nursing journal articles will be summarized and referenced as well. Health Problems and Rationale Heart failure affects nearly 6 million Americans. Roughly 670,000 people are diagnosed with heart failure each year. It is the leading cause of hospitalization in people older than 65 (Smith, 2013). HF is the inability of the heart to pump sufficient blood to meet the needs of the tissues for oxygen and nutrients. HF in the past was referred to as Congestive Heart Failure because many patients experience pulmonary or peripheral congestion (Smeltzer, 2010). Currently HF is recognized as a clinical syndrome characterized by signs and symptoms of fluid overload or of inadequate tissue perfusion (Smeltzer, 2010). HF is a syndrome rather than a primary diagnosis because it has many potential etiologies, diverse clinical features, and numerous clinical subsets (HFSA, 2010). The term HF indicates myocardial disease in which there is a problem with contraction (systolic) or filling (diastolic) of the heart that may or may not cause pulmonary or systemic congestion. Some cases are reversible, depending on the cause. CHF is a serious disease

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