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Family Doctor Series on Heart Failure
Family Doctor Series on Heart Failure
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  • Overview
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Heart failure sounds frightening, but doctors actually use the term to describe all the situations where the heart cannot keep up with the demands made on it by the body. Heart failure is uncommon in people under the age of 50. The principal cause of heart failure in the over-50s is a heart attack, which weakens the heart and impairs its pumping ability. If the heart fails to pump enough blood, this can cause, among other symptoms, breathlessness, swollen ankles and tiredness. Heart failure is treatable and with medical help the heart can generally manage well enough.