Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Cardiomegaly or the problem of enlarged heart usually takes place from any related heart problems, abnormal heart rhythms and similar other problems. Even sometimes over stress at the time of pregnancy also leads to enlarged heart disease or ‘cardiomegaly.’ An enlarged heart may even takes place because of other conditions, such as weakening of the heart muscle, coronary artery disease, heart valve problems, as all these conditions may cause thickening of heart muscles or make one of the heart chambers too delicate, thereby, resulting in cardiomegaly problem.

Symptoms

Most of the times, people suffering from the problem of enlarged heart do not experience any sign or symptoms. However, in other cases, the problem shows the following major signs and symptoms:

When to Visit a Doctor?

If you have concern for your heart, you should visit the doctor soon, because it enlarges the heart when detected earlier can be treated easily.

Make an appointment to go to the doctor after you notice any sign or symptom related to enlarged heart disease.

Avail emergency medical care in case or urgency, as it indicates that you experience heart attack followed by the following major signs or symptoms:

  • Fainting
  • Severe abnormalities in breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Discomfort in jaw, stomach, arms, the back and also the other areas of upper body

How Do You Die From An Enlarged Heart?

How Do You Die From An Enlarged Heart?

Enlarged heart becomes critical when the heart muscles suffer damages or when the heart pumps harder than usual. Sometimes enlarged heart is idiopathic, as it becomes weak because of unknown reasons.

  • Enlarged heart condition may take place in individuals from birth
  • Besides this, damage due to heart attack or abnormal heartbeat (arrhythmia) result in enlarged heart.

Other Major Causes

Other major causes of enlarged heart are-

High Blood Pressure: Sometimes your heart may have to pump harder in order to supply blood to the body, so it enlarges and thickens the muscle of heart. Left ventricle is enlarged in high blood pressure that makes the nearby muscles weak. High blood pressure even causes atria that means enlargement of upper chambers.

Heart Valve Disease: The blood flows in right direction within the four valves of the heart. However, if eventually any of the four valves suffer damage by conditions like heart defect, infectious endocarditis, rheumatic fever, connective tissue disorders, medications or radiations of cancer treatment, it leads to enlargement of your heart.

Cardiomyopathy – Diseases of the Heart Muscle: The heart faces problem like thickening and stiffening of heart muscle, may try to supply or pump more blood to your body.

Pericardial Effusion: When the nearby fluid accumulates across pericardium sac containing your heart, it leads to heart enlargement.

Anemia (Low Red Blood Cell Count): When there is lack of enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to tissues, it leads to anemia. When chronic anemia left untreated for long time, it causes irregular heartbeat because the heart pump more blood to cover the lack of oxygen in blood.

Thyroid Disorder: Both types of thyroid gland under active thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism) and overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism) result in the problem of enlarged heart.

Risk Factors

Heart Attack: Risk associated with the problem of enlarged heart increases if you already experienced a heart attack.

Heart Valve Disease: The four valves of heart –aortic, mitral, and pulmonary and tricuspid valves help in opening and closing for direct blood flow through your heart. In case any condition causes damage to the valves (even any one), it leads to enlarged heart.

High Blood Pressure: Measurement of blood pressure higher than 140/90 millimeters of mercury indicates your risk related to enlarged heart.

Congenital Heart Disease: If one is born with the condition affecting the internal structure of heart, then the patient remains at a risk of enlarged heart.

Enlarged Heart Complications that Lead to Death

  • As muscles get weak in enlarged heart, it causes heart failure.
  • Blood get clots in several parts.
  • Improper flow of blood creates sound called murmur.
  • Cardiac arrest and sudden death.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: October 11, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

Sign Up for Our Newsletter

We'll help you live each day to the healthiest