Heart Failure Clinic
Heart failure is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood to the body's other organs. The "failing" heart keeps working, but not as efficiently as it should. Persons with heart failure become short of breath and tired. They also experience swelling in the legs and ankles, and often experience weight gain as fluid builds up in the body.
Heart failure is the most common reason for hospitalization among persons 65 and older. Heart failure remains the fastest growing heart problem in the United States. About 5 million Americans suffer from the disease.
At Sacred Heart Hospital, the Heart Failure Clinic and its dedicated staff are committed to providing high quality care to help heart failure patients remain healthy. An outpatient clinic, the Heart Failure Clinic is located on the first floor of Sacred Heart’s Heart & Vascular Institute. Experienced, compassionate nurses in the clinic work with a team of healthcare professionals from many disciplines to help patients achieve a better quality of life. Most people with mild and moderate congestive heart failure can be treated with a regimen that includes rest, modified daily activities, proper diet, and various medications.
The quality of our program has been rated in a national study of all U.S. hospitals as having significantly better outcomes than most hospitals for the past three years. In addition, Sacred Heart’s Heart Failure Clinic has been recognized on the state level for its achievement in helping heart-failure patients avoid problems that cause them to be re-admitted to the hospital.
Many people with heart failure are not aware of their condition because they often attribute some of the most common symptoms, such as shortness of breath and fatigue, to getting older. When a patient is diagnosed with heart failure, the team in our Heart Failure Clinic works to help each person understand the condition and his or her individual needs. A treatment plan is designed to address all aspects of the patient's healthcare needs, including diet, an exercise program, medication and personal support systems.
“Heart failure is a chronic disease, and it affects all socioeconomic levels,” says Cindy Holoway, ARNP, Nurse Practitioner at the Heart Failure Clinic. “A great deal of management is needed, including education on when patients should seek assistance and how to take care of themselves when they have issues. In the clinic, in addition to education, we can obtain and monitor lab work, blood pressures and EKG rhythm strips, and work with them to meet their medication goals. Medications need to be monitored and carefully adjusted because they can affect blood pressure, heart rate, symptoms and lab work.”
Sacred Heart’s Heart Failure Clinic is readily available for patients who are experiencing difficulty, and patients can usually be seen that day or the next. For more information about the clinic, call 416-4189.