Symptoms of heart failure
The symptoms of heart failure include breathlessness, fatigue, swelling of ankles and feet, shortness of breath and fluid on the lungs. These symptoms can result in an overall reduction in mobility, exercise tolerance and stamina. Heart failure can make it difficult to carry out normal activities of daily living such as walking to the shops, putting the washing out or mowing the lawn.
Diagnosis of heart failure
Heart failure is diagnosed via an echocardiogram and blood tests. An echocardiogram uses ultrasound imaging to measure the volume of blood that exits the heart as it pumps. A reduction in volume indicates the heart is not pumping properly and is failing.
Treatment for heart failure
Treatment for heart failure focuses on symptom management and avoiding progression of the condition. This usually involves medication such as ACE inhibitors which improve quality of life. It is important that the individual with heart failure leads a healthy lifestyle with careful balance of fluid and salt intake and regular light exercise.
Physiotherapy for heart failure
Individuals with heart failure substantially benefit from thorough assessment and treatment with a specialist physiotherapist. Assessment will comprise of a detailed analysis of muscle strength, range of movement, balance and exercise tolerance. Your physiotherapist will discuss the findings of the assessment and suggest specific short and long term goals to target treatment sessions. Depending on your problems and goals, treatment sessions will vary for each individual. Largely, physiotherapy treatment for individuals with heart failure will be focused on:
- Mobility and balance
- Fitness and stamina
- Massage and elevation of lower limbs
- Strengthening of arms and legs
- Range of movement
- Fatigue management
- Breathing exercises
The proven clinical benefits of physiotherapy include:
- Improved mobility and balance
- Increased stamina, fitness and exercise tolerance
- Increased muscle strength and flexibility
- Advice and provision of mobility aids and equipment
- Learn exercise to do at home
- Learn how to cope with breathlessness
- Learn how to reduce ankle swelling
With regular attendance at physiotherapy sessions, you will be able to achieve your goals and strive for a higher standard of quality of life.
Why Physio.co.uk for heart failure
At Physio.co.uk we understand that it is difficult to carry out a fulfilling active life with symptoms of breathlessness and fatigue. Our specialist physiotherapists can show you how to manage your symptoms and maintain the highest possible quality of life.
- Treatment at any stage of your condition
- Treatment at home or in the clinic
- Knowledgeable, professional physiotherapists
- Set targets and goals of your rehabilitation
- Flexible appointment times
- Access to specialised gymnasium and swimming pool
- Access to hydrotherapy