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Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

Heart Failure: Warning Signs of a Flare-UpInsuficiencia card­aca: Se±ales de una reca­da

Heart Failure: Warning Signs of a Flare-Up

Once you have heart failure, flare-ups can happen. Below are signs that can mean your heart failure is getting worse. If you notice any of these warning signs, call your health care provider.

Swelling

Swollen ankles

Man short of breath, climbing stairs

  • Your ankles or lower legs get puffier.

  • Your shoes feel too tight.

  • Your clothes are tighter in the waist.

  • You have trouble getting rings on or off your fingers.

Shortness of Breath

  • You have to breathe harder even when you're doing your normal activities or when you're resting.

  • You wake up at night short of breath or coughing.

  • You need to use more pillows or sit up to sleep.

Other Warning Signs

  • You feel weaker, dizzy, or more tired.

  • You have chest pain or changes in your heartbeat.

  • You have a cough that won't go away.

  • You can't remember things or don't feel like eating.

Tracking Your Weight

Gaining weight is often the first warning sign that heart failure is getting worse. Gaining even a few pounds can be a sign that your body is retaining excess water and salt. Weighing yourself each day is the best way to know if you're retaining water. Your health care provider will show you how to track your weight. Follow your health care provider's instructions about calling to report weight gain.

Publication Source: American Heart Association

Publication Source: National Heart Lung and Blood Institute

Online Source: American Heart Association

Online Source: National Heart Lung and Blood Institute

Date Last Reviewed: 2007-01-15T00:00:00-07:00

Date Last Modified: 2009-04-30T00:00:00-06:00

Jay L. Jordan, MD, is an experienced cardiologist and internal medicine physician who provides a comprehensive range of cardiac care services in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Glendale, Burbank, Calabasas and nearby communities. Take the first step in preventing and controlling heart disease with symptoms such as angina, arrhythmias, atrial fibrillation, cardiomyopathy, carotid artery disease, chest pain, congestive heart failure, coronary vascular disease, hypertension, palpitations, shortness of breath and stroke. Call Dr. Jay L. Jordan at 310-854-5493 or request an appointment online.

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