Heart failure is a serious condition. Nearly 389,000 people died from heart failure in 2018, and 6.2 million adults in the United States currently live with the condition. When we talk about it, we speak about it in general terms, but did you know that there are different types of heart failure?
There are two main types of heart failure you should know about, diastolic and systolic. Curious about the differences between diastolic vs. systolic heart failure? Read on to learn everything you need to know!
Table of Contents
What Is Diastolic Heart Failure?
The first thing you need to know is that there are four chambers of the heart. The left ventricle is in charge of pumping oxygenated blood throughout your body. Any kind of heart failure involving the left ventricle is either diastolic or systolic.
Diastolic heart failure occurs when your heart’s left ventricle is unable to relax between heartbeats. Typically, when the left ventricle relaxes, it allows blood to fill the ventricle. This blood would then get pumped out of the ventricle with the next heartbeat, providing the body with enough oxygenated blood to function.
If the left ventricle doesn’t relax, then there is less space in the ventricle for blood and not enough blood getting circulated throughout the body.
What Is Systolic Heart Failure?
Systolic heart failure occurs when the left ventricle does not contract strongly enough to pump blood throughout your body when your heart beats. In medical terminology, this is known as reduced ejection fraction. Ejection fraction measures how much blood the left ventricle pumps out with each contraction.
Even though the ventricle is relaxed before the heartbeat and fills up with blood, it needs a strong enough contraction in order to send the blood to all the parts of your body.
As a result, your body doesn’t get enough oxygen supply. This causes things like organ dysfunction.
Diastolic vs. Systolic Heart Failure
Both diastolic and systolic heart failure are a failure of the left ventricle. Diastolic heart failure occurs between heartbeats and systolic occurs with the heartbeat. The biggest question you need to be asking yourself is what are the signs?
Perhaps you’ve searched the internet for “heart failure swollen feet” before. Swollen feet and legs are common signs of heart failure, along with feeling short of breath throughout the day and when lying down. You might also notice that you’re feeling tired or weak.
If you’re worried that you might be experiencing heart failure, it’s important that you speak to a doctor as soon as possible.
Staying Healthy Is the Goal
Learning all about diastolic vs. systolic heart failure is critical knowledge. This is especially true when you have a family history of heart disease and other risk factors that increase your chances of heart failure. The best thing you can do for yourself is to live an active and healthy lifestyle to try to reduce your risk of becoming a heart failure statistic.
Thankfully, experts are dreaming up new and innovative health tech that can help improve your life and reduce your heart failure risks. Check out the rest of our blog for tons of great articles about the latest in health technology and more!