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Congestive Heart Failure – Causes and Warning Signs

In the beginning, you may not immediately notice any symptoms of congestive heart failure. For a while, your heart and body will work overtime. Your heart may pump blood faster and pump more with every single beat. This is known as compensation. As your heart begins to have more trouble, though, you are more likely to notice the warning signs.


Heart failure may be due to various problems that damage the heart or affects how it functions. On top of these issues, certain triggers may cause heart failure to worsen, including too much sodium or fail to take the proper medicines on a schedule. This may lead to deadly issues such as pulmonary edema or cardiogenic shock.

Problems that may worsen congestive heart failure include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart attack
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Alcohol, drugs, and prescription medication
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Infection or inflammation
  • Rheumatic fever
  • Aging

Warning Signs

Symptoms of congestive heart failure will begin when your heart simply cannot pump enough blood to your body. In the early stages, you may start to experience:

  • Feeling tired quite quickly
  • Shortness of breath following exertion
  • Your heart may feel as if it is pounding or racing
  • A weak or dizzy feeling

As your condition worsens, fluid will begin to build up in the lungs and other portions of the body. You may start to notice:

  • Shortness of breath while resting
  • Swelling, especially in the legs and feet
  • Weight gain – either over a day or two or more slowly
  • Coughing and wheezing
  • Frequent urination – more during the night
  • Bloated or sick feeling in your stomach

Contact Us

For more information regarding the warning signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure, contact Brookhaven Heart today by calling (631) 654-3278. We would be happy to answer any questions you may currently have!