Difference Between

Differences Between Right And Left Sided Heart Failure

Heart failure is a condition of the heart where it is unable to pump blood efficiently. When heart failure occurs, certain signs and symptoms may become present. Depending on where the heart failure takes place and which side of the heart is affected, different symptoms can occur. It is important to know the difference between right and left sided heart failure so that proper treatment can be given and the condition may be monitored and managed properly.

What Causes Heart Failure?

When the heart is not able to supply enough blood and oxygen to the body, it is considered heart failure. This could be caused by many different factors such as narrowed arteries, weak ventricles, absence of one or more valves, or a blocked artery. Once the cause of heart failure is identified, it can then be determined whether it is right or left sided heart failure.

Right sided heart failure is diagnosed when there is reduced blood flow from the right side of the heart. This can be caused by a number of conditions including cor pulmonale, valve problems, or a combination of both. Left sided heart failure can occur when the left side of the heart is not working properly, which is typically caused by coronary artery disease, heart attack, or high blood pressure.

What Are The Symptoms?

The symptoms of both right and left sided heart failure can vary depending on the specific condition and the individual. Common signs and symptoms of heart failure may include shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness, and swollen feet or ankles. Other symptoms of right sided heart failure may include abdominal swelling, painful urination, and difficulty focusing. Left sided heart failure may be indicated by shortness of breath, dizziness, swelling in the legs and feet, and coughing.

It is important to seek medical care if you experience any of these signs and symptoms as they could be an indication of an underlying heart condition. Your doctor can help you to determine if you have right or left sided heart failure and will be able to best treat the condition.

What Are The Treatments?

Once your doctor has diagnosed you with heart failure, they will suggest the best treatment plan for you. Depending on the severity of your condition and the cause, treatment may include lifestyle changes, medications, surgery, or even a combination of all three.

In some cases, lifestyle changes may be enough to reduce symptoms and/or improve your heart health. Some lifestyle changes could include reducing salt intake, quitting smoking, exercising regularly, and following a healthy diet.

How Is Heart Failure Managed?

In cases of right and left sided heart failure, there are a number of medications that may need to be taken in order to manage the condition. These medications may include diuretics, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, and other medications that can help to reduce the strain on the heart.

Your doctor may also suggest that you undergo regular tests to monitor your condition and make sure the medications are working properly. This can include chest x-rays, electrocardiograms, ultrasounds, or other procedures.

What Are The Complications?

If left untreated or if it is not managed properly, heart failure can cause a number of serious complications. Complications can include abnormal heart rhythms, pulmonary edema, congestive heart failure, and even death. It is very important to seek treatment right away and closely follow your doctor’s instructions in order to reduce the risk of complications.

Depending on the type of heart failure you have and the severity, other treatments may be used to help manage it. These can include ventricular assist devices, pacemaker, and/or implantable cardioverter defibrillator. Your doctor will be able to advise you on the best treatments for you.

What Are The Risks?

If you are diagnosed with right or left sided heart failure and it is not managed properly, you are at risk for many serious health problems. This could include worsening fatigue, increased shortness of breath, heart attack, stroke, and worsening of the symptoms. It is very important to closely follow your doctor’s orders in order to reduce the risks of serious complications.

If you are at risk for heart failure, your doctor may suggest that you make lifestyle changes in order to reduce your risk. This can include quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy weight.


Heart failure is a serious condition of the heart where it is unable to supply enough blood and oxygen to the body. Right and left sided heart failure have different causes, symptoms, and treatments. It is very important to seek medical treatment right away if you experience signs and symptoms of heart failure. Following your doctor’s orders, making lifestyle changes, and being aware of the risks can help you to manage the condition and reduce your risk of serious complications.

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