Understanding Heart Failure
So, what is heart failure (HF)? It’s a fairly unspecific term. But, basically, it means that your heart is just not working quite as well as it should. It doesn’t mean that you have had a heart attack, or your heart has stopped working, more that it can’t pump blood around the body as effectively as is needed1.
As a result, the heart can’t keep up with its workload, and parts of the body may not get the amount of oxygen they require – at times causing exercise or physical tasks to become more difficult2.
Heart failure is not limited to the elderly
While HF is predominantly found in older people, it can also affect middle aged and younger people, too1. As HF can be the result of numerous other conditions and the impact they have on the heart, it doesn’t just affect those over 65.
Worryingly, in a recent global survey,
of respondents did not
recognise a description of what HF is3.
- NHS. Heart Failure. Available from: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/heart-failure/. Last accessed 2 September 2020.
- American Heart Association. What is Heart Failure? Available from https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/heart-failure/what-is-heart-failure. Last accessed 2 September 2020.
- AstraZeneca PLP. Data on File. ID: REF – 74964. March 2020