Our leading cardiac specialists can diagnose, manage and treat symptoms of cardiomyopathy — a disorder of heart muscle

What is cardiomyopathy?

Cardiomyopathy is an umbrella term for diseases of the heart muscle, where the walls of the heart chambers either become stretched and thin or thickened and stiff. This makes it hard for the heart to pump blood around the body and can lead to heart failure. Cardiomyopathy is often an inherited condition.

Need to know

  • What are the symptoms of cardiomyopathy? icon plus

    Symptoms of cardiomyopathy include:

    • extreme tiredness
    • rapid or fluttering heartbeat
    • chest pressure
    • dizziness or loss of consciousness
    • breathlessness while resting or moving around
    • swollen legs and ankles
    • a bloated stomach due to fluid build up

    These symptoms will get worse over time, if left untreated.

  • How is cardiomyopathy diagnosed? icon plus

    Your consultant will discuss your symptoms with you and help to make a diagnosis. They may order further tests.

    • Electrocardiogram (ECG). This measures electrical impulses from your heart. It detects abnormal heart rhythms, which can cause cardiomyopathy.
    • Echocardiogram. This looks at heart muscle and valve function.
    • Cardiac MRI scan. This explores the extent of the damage and looks for abnormalities inside the heart muscle itself.
    • Cardiac catheterisation. A biopsy of your heart, which is taken through a catheter and sent for analysis.
  • Potential treatment options icon plus

    There are many ways to manage cardiomyopathy.

    • Medication: this can improve your heart's ability to pump, remove excess fluid and lower blood pressure.
    • Implanted devices: these are surgically implanted and include pacemakers to control arrhythmia, and sometimes to improve heart muscle function. In severe cases, ventricular assist devices (VAD) may be used to support the heart.
    • Surgery: a heart transplant can be used in end-stage heart failure, and rarely, a septal myectomy can be used to remove portions of thickened heart muscle.

Our cardiologists

We're proud to work with leading cardiac experts, whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion.

Our locations

From complex cardiothoracic surgery to diagnostic tests and procedures, we provide exceptional cardiac care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

Book an appointment

Our team can help with any enquiries or you can make an appointment with one of our experienced consultants.

Call us today

020 7079 4344
This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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