Heart Failure and Associated Comorbidities

Health and Wellness With Purpose Blog Post
Prepare an article that could be published on GCU’s Health and Wellness With Purpose
blog. This article may summarize the findings of a public health research study that has
been published within the last year, or you may choose to write about a specific health
issue and articulate a clear health message.
Exemplary submissions may be eligible for publishing on GCU’s Health and Wellness
With Purposeblog, so students should use audience-appropriate language and write as if
for publication. This is an opportunity to gain early recognition and be featured within
the public health community.
Complete one of the following options:
Option 1: Summarize Research Findings
Prepare an article of 500-750-words in which you accomplish the following:
Describe the study’s findings.
Explain why the problem happened.
Interpret what the study’s findings mean.
Provide a compelling call to action related to addressing or solving the problem.
Option 2: Health Issue Summary with Health Message
Prepare an article of 500-750-words in which you accomplish the following:
Provide an overview of the health issue.
Describe the populations most at risk or most affected by the issue.
Summarize ways to improve the health issue.
Provide a clear health message to influence behavior change related to the issue.
Incorporate three to five resources to support your blog post article.

Heart Failure and Associated Comorbidities
Background Information

Heart failure is one of the chronic conditions attributed to a high incidence and death
rate in the United States. It is a progressive chronic condition which is characterized by the
heart’s inability to meet the body’s demand for oxygen and nutrient supply through
incapacitation of its function and structure (Cleland, Van Veldhuisen, & Ponikwoski, 2019) .
More often than not, it is accompanied and predisposed by various conditions which include

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hypertension, diabetes, obesity, hyperlipidemia, cardiomyopathies such as coronary artery
disease, rheumatic fever, alcohol abuse, smoking and medication for the treatment of other
chronic ailments. Family history of myocardial infarction and other cardiovascular conditions
is also considered a risk factor for the patient. Approximately 6 million Americans are
affected by the condition, with over 870,000 people diagnosed each year (Ziaeian &
Fonarow, 2016) . Furthermore, it is associated with a significant number of mortalities,
healthcare expenditure due to the chronic and progressive nature, and morbidity.
Additionally, accounts for a high number of hospitalization and rehospitalization of
geriatric patients due to complications brought about by the condition. Therapeutic
innovations and modern medicine have also led to an increase in the prevalence of the disease
globally with minimal change in the mortality rates among the patients (Arrigo, Parissis,
Eiichi, & Mebzaa, 2016) . As such, the populations must be screened for the condition to
ensure early detection and intervention to halt or slow down the progression of the disease.
Moreover, it is exacerbated by the occurrence of comorbidities with heart failure being
secondary to the conditions. There are various methodologies and modalities which have
been developed to assess and screen for impending and existing heart failure among the
population to allow for early institution of treatment and thus prolong the life of the patient
(Kim, Cho, & Yoon, 2015) . Prevention measures have also been executed with significant
effect in minimizing morbidity and mortality rates of the conditions or development of
complications associated with the condition.

Affected Population and Most at Risk

Heart failure affects almost an equal number of women and men in the United States
with one of every four deaths attributed to heart failure and its complications. However,
disparities in the distribution of the prevalence rates vary from one place to another due to the

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inequalities in healthcare seen in the United States with the vulnerable and underserved
populations being greatly affected (Di Lenarda, Stellato, & Radini, 2019) . Low-income adults
are also more affected by the condition as compared to higher-income adults due to
accessibility and affordability of healthcare and medication for the treatment and prevention
of the condition.
Additionally, rural populations are adversely affected as compared to urban
communities due to the availability of healthcare facilities and information on the condition.
Geriatric patients are also affected by the condition due to the existence of comorbidities and
are usually a secondary occurrence. Furthermore, it is the leading cause of hospitalization and
rehospitalization of the patient over 65 years of age (Von Lueder & Agewall, 2018) . The
highest population group affected by the condition are aged between 45-80 years. Moreover,
it may be attributed to the aging population in the United States hence the increasing
incidence and prevalence among the given age group.

Prevention and Management of Heart Failure

Prevention and management strategies of heart failure aim at minimizing the risk of
development of the condition and its complication. It results in slowing down or halting the
progression of the condition in the patients hence affording them longer more comfortable
lives. Populations at risk of developing the disease are advised to cease smoking, reduction of
alcohol intake, control and manage underlying conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and
hyperlipidemia, healthy diet and regular exercises (Metra & Teerlink, 2017) . As such lifestyle
changes are essential in the prevention of the condition.
Moreover, the patient is required to adhere to the various treatment protocols
instituted for the comorbidities to reduce the risk of developing secondary heart failure
sequelae to the diseases. Medications have been used successfully to reduce the risk and rate

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of development of heart failure and cardiovascular conditions and include cardiac glycosides,
hypolipidemic, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers,
diuretics, aldosterone antagonists, and beta-blockers among others. Anticoagulants may also
be used to prevent the development of heart failure (Tanaka, 2018) . Consequently, the patient
must adhere to the treatment instituted to ensure its efficacy.
Health promotion messaging needs to highlight the various risk factors of developing
and exacerbating heart failure and should be incorporated into patient education and
community outreach programs and events. The role of lifestyle changes in the prevention and
management of the condition is critical and as such, should be encouraged (Kurmani &
Squire, 2017) . Sedentary lifestyles should be discouraged with the initiation of communal
exercise activities and facilities such as walking and cycling lanes, parks and other recreation
centers are also crucial in providing adequate facilities for running, jogging, cycling, and
walking which enhance prevention measures. Patient education is also crucial as it creates
awareness on the dangers posed by heart failure (Diez-Villanueva & Alfonso, 2016) .
Furthermore, it equips the society with the required self-management knowledge that they
require to self-monitor at home, minimizing the cost of healthcare. Balanced and low sodium
diet also aids in the prevention and management of heart failure among at-risk and affected
individuals in a population.

References

Arrigo, M., Parissis, J. T., Eiichi, A., & Mebzaa, A. (2016). Understanding acute heart
failure: pathophysiology and diagnosis. European Heart Journal Supplements,
18(Suppl_G), G11-G18. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/suw044
Cleland, J. G., Van Veldhuisen, D. J., & Ponikwoski, P. (2019). The year in cardiology 2018:
Heart failure. European Heart Journal, 40(8), 651-661. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehz010

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Di Lenarda, A., Stellato, K., & Radini, D. (2019). The challenge of heart failure diagnosis
and management in primary care in elderly population: Mere illusion or concrete
opportunity? International Journal of Cardiology, 274, 248-249.
Diez-Villanueva, P., & Alfonso, F. (2016). Heart failure in the elderly. Journal of Geriatric
Cardiology, 13(2), 115-117.
Kim, H.-S., Cho, J.-H., & Yoon, K.-H. (2015). New Directions in Chronic Disease
Management. Endocrinology and Metabolism, 30(2), 159-166.
Kurmani, S., & Squire, I. (2017). Acute heart failure: Definition, classification, and
epidemiology. Current Heart Failure Reports, 14(5), 385-392.
Metra, M., & Teerlink, J. R. (2017). Heart Failure. The Lancet, 390(10106), P1981-P1995.
Tanaka, H. (2018). Future perspectives for management of stage A heart failure. Journal of
atherosclerosis and thrombosis, 25(7), 557–565.
Von Lueder, T. G., & Agewall, S. (2018). The burden of heart failure in the general
population: A clearer and more concerning picture. Journal of Thoracic Diseases,
10(Suppl 17), S1934-S1937.
Ziaeian, B., & Fonarow, G. C. (2016). Epidemiology and aetiology of heart failure. Nature
Reviews Cardiology, 13(6), 368-378.

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