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Managing Heart Failure

Understanding Medications

Heart Failure: Medications to Help Your Heart - VHL HealthSheet #86181_VA
Your doctor will likely prescribe medications for heart failure and any underlying health problems you have. Most heart failure patients take one or more types of medication. Your healthcare provider will work to find the combination of medications that works best for you.
Taking Medicine to Control Heart Failure - VHL HealthSheet #82026_VA
Medicines can help your heart work better. But they can’t do their job unless you take them exactly as directed by your doctor. Some results: Medicines help you feel better. They help your heart work better. They can help you stay out of the hospital.
Taking a Diuretic - VHL HealthSheet #83115_VA
The purpose of a diuretic, or “water pill” is to help your body get rid of excess water and salt. Diuretics can help you feel better and have more energy. They may also help lower blood pressure.
What Is Heart Failure? - VHL HealthSheet #82055_VA
Heart failure can happen in two ways. The heart muscle may become weak and enlarged (systolic dysfunction). The weakened muscle doesn’t pump enough blood forward when the ventricles contract. Or, the heart muscle may become stiff (diastolic dysfunction). The stiff muscle can’t relax between contractions, which keeps the ventricles from filling with enough blood.
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