Understanding Inherited Heart Conditions: What You Need to Know
Are you aware that Inherited heart conditions? This means that if someone in your family has a heart issue, there’s a chance you may have it too. Inherited heart diseases are often caused by genetic mutations that cause abnormalities in the structure or function of the heart. Understanding these conditions is vital to help prevent their progression and maintain a healthy life. So what do you need to know about inherited heart conditions? Keep reading as we explore this topic further and provide some valuable insights on how to manage them effectively.
What are Inherited heart conditions?
Inherited heart conditions are passed down through families and can be serious life-threatening conditions. Inherited heart conditions include inheriting a gene that causes the condition, being born with the condition, or developing it after birth.
Some of the most common inherited heart conditions include:
Aortic aneurysm: An aneurysm is a bulging in the wall of an artery. Aortic aneurysms can be small, but they can also be large and dangerous. They occur most commonly in people older than 60, but they can also happen in younger people. If untreated, an aortic aneurysm can burst and cause death.
Aortic stenosis: Aortic stenosis is a narrowing of the aorta due to atherosclerosis (a build-up of plaque on the inside of the arteries). The narrowed area reduces the flow of blood and can lead to chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, and dizziness. It usually affects men more than women and people 55 years or older are at the highest risk for getting it. If left untreated, aortic stenosis can lead to congestive heart failure (CHF) and death.
Atrial fibrillation: Atrial fibrillation is an irregular heartbeat that most often affects older adults over 60 years old. It’s caused by Problems with the electrical activity in one or more of your heart’s upper chambers (at
The Types of Inherited heart conditions
Heart diseases are a leading cause of death in the United States, and can be passed down from parent to child. There are many different types of inherited heart conditions, and each has its own set of symptoms and treatments. Here’s a breakdown of the most common inherited heart conditions:
Aortic stenosis: This is a narrowing of the aorta, which is the largest artery in the body. Aortic stenosis can lead to chest pain and difficulty breathing. Treatment typically involves surgery to open up the narrowed area.
Ascending aortic aneurysm: This is an enlargement (bulge) in the wall of an artery near the heart. If left untreated, ascending aneurysms can rupture, leading to serious injury or even death. Treatment typically involves surgery to remove the aneurysm and restore blood flow to the area.
Mitral stenosis: This is a condition where one or both of the mitral valves – which regulate blood flow through your heart – become narrow or blocked. This can lead to chest pain, shortness of breath, and fatigue. Treatment typically involves medication and/or surgery to open up either valve or replace it with a valve from another part of your body.
Myocarditis: This is an inflammation (swelling)of your heart muscle cells. Myocarditis can cause chest pain, fever, irregular heartbeat, and weight loss. Treatment typically involves antibiotics and/or card
How Is a Person diagnosed with this Disease?
There are a number of ways in which a person can be diagnosed with inherited heart disease. A doctor may perform a physical exam and ask about a family history of heart problems. If the person has any symptoms, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or trouble sleeping, the doctor may order tests to determine the cause of the symptoms.
A person may be diagnosed with inherited heart disease if he or she has one of the following: a family history of heart problems; a condition that increases your risk for developing heart problems, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or obesity; or signs and symptoms that suggest the person has developed heart disease.
The most common type of inherited heart disease is called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). HCM is caused by a change in the way muscle cells produce energy. This change leads to the thickening (hypertrophy) of the muscle walls around the heart.
HCM usually affects young adults and is often fatal. Other types of inherited heart diseases include dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), familial combined hyperlipidemia (FCH), and myocarditis. DCM is caused by mutations in genes that control how cholesterol is used by the body.
FCH is caused by mutations in genes that control how fat is used by the body. Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle caused by infection or another underlying condition.
Types of Treatments for Inherited Heart Diseases
There are a few types of treatments for inherited heart conditions that can be attempted. If the person has an underlying heart condition, they may need to have surgery to correct it. If there is no underlying heart condition, medications may be prescribed to help lower the risk of future heart attacks. Some people may also require lifelong medical monitoring and treatment.
Are there any risks associated with Inherited Heart Disease?
There are a few risks associated with inherited heart conditions, but they’re relatively minor. For example, if you have a condition like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (a type of heart muscle problem), your risk of heart attack goes up.
But most inherited heart conditions won’t cause any symptoms or problems until they’re severe enough to cause death. And even then, the chances of dying from an inherited heart condition are still very low. The biggest risk associated with inherited heart conditions is that they can be passed down to your children.
If you have an inherited heart condition, your children are likely to have a 50% chance of having the same condition and a 50% chance of having a different condition.
If you or a loved one is struggling with an inherited heart condition, now is the time to learn all you can about the condition. By understanding what heart conditions are passed down through families and what symptoms to watch for, you can get on track to a healthier future. In addition to our article on inherited heart conditions, be sure to check out our blog for more information on how genetic testing and treatments are changing the way these conditions are treated.