Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

Contact Us

300 S. Prairieville St
PO Box 991
Athens, TX 75751

Toll Free: 877-596-3500
Phone: 903-677-3500
Fax: 903-677-4700

Office Hours:
M-F 9am - 4pm

Our services may include but are not limited to:

  • Observation and Assessment
  • Management and Evaluation
  • Fluid Intake Education
  • Medication Education
    • Diuretic Therapy
    • Electrolyte Replacement
  • Safety Education
    • Ambulation Technique
    • Transfer Technique
  • Weight Monitoring
  • Cardiac Assessment
  • Disease Process Education
  • Assistance with ADLs

What is CHF?

Congestive heart failure, or heart failure, is a condition in which the heart is unable to adequately pump blood throughout the body and/or unable to prevent blood from “backing up” into the lungs.

Heart failure is characterized by shortness of breath (dyspnea) and abnormal fluid retention, which usually results in swelling (edema) in the feet and legs.

How prevalent is CHF?

Nearly 5 million people experience heart failure and about 550,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States. Heart failure becomes more prevalent with age and the number of cases is expected to grow as the overall age of the population increases.

What are some risk factors for CHF?

A single risk factor may be enough to cause heart failure, but a combination of factors increases your risk. Risk factors include:
  • High blood pressure
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Heart attack
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Diabetes and some diabetes medications
  • Sleep apnea
  • Congenital heart defects
  • Viruses
  • Alcohol use
  • Kidney conditions

What are some symptoms of CHF?

  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Reduced ability to exercise
  • Persistent cough or wheezing with white or pink blood-tinged phlegm
  • Swelling (legs, ankles, feet, abdomen)
  • Sudden weight gain from fluid retention
  • Lack of appetite and nausea
  • Difficulty concentrating

What are some changes in symptoms to look for?

Heart failure requires you and your caregivers to pay close attention to any changes in symptoms. If you notice something new, or a sudden worsening of a current symptom, notify your healthcare professional immediately.

Watch for:
  • Sudden weight gain — three or more pounds in one day, five or more pounds in one week, or whatever amount you were told to report.
  • Shortness of breath while at rest, not related to exercise or exertion.
  • Increased swelling of the lower limbs (legs or ankles).
  • Swelling or pain in the abdomen.
  • Trouble sleeping (awakening short of breath, using more pillows).
  • Frequent dry, hacking cough.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Increased fatigue or feeling tired all the time.

What lifestyle changes should be made?

If you have CHF, follow these action steps.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Lose or maintain your weight.
  • Avoid alcohol.
  • Avoid or limit caffeine.
  • Eating a heart-healthy diet that's low in saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol and sodium.
  • Exercise (Try a structured rehabilitation program.)
  • Manage stress.
  • Keep track of symptoms and report any changes that concern you to your healthcare professonal.
  • Work more closely with your healthcare team.
  • Monitor your blood pressure.
  • In addition your doctor may recommend medications to treat your heart failure or surgery to treat underlying problems that may have led to heart failure.

For more information contact your physician.

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Vision: Our vision is to simply exceed the quality and service expectations of those we serve…

Philosophy: Our philosophy is providing patient care to the best of our ability in an effort to promote healing while maintaining respect through teamwork…

Mission Statement: Outstanding Service with Integrity.