Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital’s Heart Failure Clinic
Heart failure is one of the most common reasons older adults are in the hospital. The number of people diagnosed with heart failure has risen in recent years. It is important to know the signs of congestive heart failure and get treatment early because heart failure is a serious disease.
What is heart failure?
Heart failure happens when your heart is weak and cannot pump blood the way it should. Your body needs your heart to supply oxygen-rich blood to your cells. When your heart does not squeeze strongly enough or relax, blood can back up into your heart and lungs. Increased pressure then forces fluid from your blood into your lungs and other places.
How do I know if I have heart failure?
Patients with heart failure may have some or all of the following signs:
• Shortness of breath
• Fatigue, tiredness, loss of energy
• Loss of appetite
• Abdominal (stomach) bloating or pain
• Swollen ankles or legs
• Weight gain
Heart failure symptoms may stop you from doing things you enjoy or need to do. Many patients are afraid of their diagnosis.
However, you can take control of your heart failure. Understand your treatment plan and do what your doctor and healthcare team tell you to do. If you follow the plan you will have a better chance to feel better, stay out of the hospital, improve your quality of life, and live longer.
What does ALMH's Heart Failure Clinic do?
ALMH's Heart Failure Clinic takes a proactive, team approach. We work together to help prevent and treat heart failure.
The Heart Failure program is designed to help patients live more comfortably with heart failure. We teach about the early signs of heart failure so they know when to seek treatment. Ignoring early signs of heart failure could create an emergency situation. If your physician has diagnosed you with heart failure, you can ask him or her to refer you to this program.
ALMH's Heart Failure Clinic offers the following services:
• Patient and family education
• Medicine review and help from a registered pharmacist
• Dietary consultation
• Activity/exercise instruction
• Referrals to support services
For more information, please call ALMH at 217-605-5112.
If you feel you could benefit from ALMH's Heart Failure Clinic, ask your physician for a referral.