Cardiac asthma is not asthma in its literal form, though it bears many similarities to the allergic form of asthma. Cardiac asthma is wheezing due to congestive failure of the heart. It happens when the fluid build up in the lungs to a large extent and happens only if the asthmatic condition has been ignored over a longer time frame. The fluid builds up resulting in heart failure.
Cardiac asthma is triggered by extreme reflex blocking of the lungs and is a fatal clinical condition. If left untreated, if may even lead to death. Predominantly it is an asthmatic form of breathing that is heightened by a sudden blockage of pulmonary circulation. This bronchial spasm in cardiac asthma is caused by pressure from the rear of the heart, wherein, the left side of the heart experiences a sudden disproportion between it’s operate load and its actual capacity. It is comparable to lung asthma but in this case, the heart valves do not open completely resulting in shortness of breath, wheezing and coughing.
The signs and symptoms of cardiac asthma vary in their intensity from person to person but surface especially post exercise or while asleep. Major symptoms of cardiac asthma are shortness of breath, shallow or rapid breathing, chest pain, accelerated heart beat, high blood pressure or swelling in the ankles. The symptoms may worsen as time passes and may wake you up in the middle of night due to shortness of breath. Ankle swelling is characteristic of cardiac asthma which you may notice under normal asthmatic conditions.
As in asthma triggered by an allergen, in cardiac asthma ensure that you don’t use an inhaler as it may worsen your condition. Cardiac asthma decreases the pumping efficacy of the heart when fluid develops in the lungs, thereby, narrowing air passages. Cardiac asthma is a sign of an ensuing heart failure. Cardiac asthma is a life threatening chronic problem and needs to be heeded to on an immediate basis. Ensure that you leave all work, relax and breathe in deeply and visit your doctor as soon as any sign or symptom erupts.
Effective management of cardiac asthma is timely diagnosis where the doctor needs to differentiate between wheezing, allergen asthma and cardiac asthma. Treatment is decided according to the level of blockage of pulmonary circulatory system. If cardiac asthma is caused by obstructive pulmonary disease a surgery might be suggested. Treatment may also involve diuretics, bronchodilators or supplementary oxygen.
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