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Will Young Woman Suffer From Heart Failure?

A lot of factors can lead to a heart failure, and most patients with heart failure are middle aged or elderly people. However, some special diseases can also cause heart failure in young people.

A 30-year-old woman came to Taipei City Hospital Zhongxing Branch and complained of palpitation and dyspnea over a period of time. She was feeling out of the breath on that day and decided to seek emergency care. Her heartbeat was as high as 160 times per minute, the electrocardiogram suggested atrial fibrillation combined with supraventricular tachycardia; an X-ray also showed pulmonary edema, so she was hospitalized in the intensive care unit. Meanwhile, the thyroid function test indicated hyperthyroidism. After taking drugs for treating heart failure and hyperthyroidism, the patient recovered normal sinus rhythm, with the pulmonary edema also eliminated, and she was successfully discharged.

Kuan-Yu Chen, director of the Cardiology Department in Taipei City Hospital Zhongxing Branch, points out that for patients suffering from atrial fibrillation combined with heart failure, hyperthyroidism, common among female patients, is the disease that must be eliminated. If only heart failure is treated while hyperthyroidism is not controlled, the treatment will hardly be effective. In some special cases, ECMO will need to be used for treating shock. He suggests that if you have unexplainable palpitation combined with tachycardia, easy sweating, hand trembling or neck swelling, you should see a doctor for further examination.

Dr. Chen reminds us that patients with hyperthyroidism should get more rest, relax, follow the doctors’ recommendations in reducing the intake of food containing iodine (such as laver and seaweed) and salt, eat small but multiple meals to supply enough energy, take in food rich in vitamins and avoid smoking or beverages containing caffeine and alcohol.