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Cardiomyopathy overview

Cardiomyopathy, also known as myocardiopathy, is a condition that includes diseases of the heart muscle, resulting in abnormal heart function. It is a progressive impairment of the structure and function of the muscular walls of the heart chambers, and is distinguished from heart muscle impairment caused by hypertension, coronary atherosclerosis, valvular dysfunction, or abnormalities of the pericardium. Cardiomyopathy may be caused by many disorders, or it may be idiopathic (of unknown cause). The main types of cardiomyopathies are dilated, hypertrophic, and restrictive. Cardiomyopathies often cause symptoms of heart failure. Some cardiomyopathies may also cause chest pain, fainting, arrhythmia, or sudden death. Treatment of cardiomyopathies, in addition to lifestyle changes, includes drug therapy with beta-blockers, diuretics, anticoagulants and antiarrhythmics, surgical intervention, pacemaker therapy, and in high-risk patients, implantable cardioverter defibrillator to prevent sudden cardiac death. Cardiac transplantation is an option for patients who do not respond to any of these treatment options.

Cardiomyopathy overview

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