Cardiomyopathy is a condition in which a portion of the heart becomes thick without an obvious cause, resulting in it being less able to pump blood effectively. Complications as a result of this condition include heart failure, an irregular heartbeat, and sudden heart attack and death.
The disease is usually inherited and it is caused by a change in some of the genes in heart muscle proteins. It can also develop over time because of factors such as: – high blood pressure, aging, diabetes or thyroid disease.
Cardiomyopathy can affect men and women of any age equally. It is said to be a common cause of sudden heart attacks in young people, including young athletes.
Signs or Symptoms of Cardiomyopathy
Some people with cardiomyopathy never have signs or symptoms in the early stages of the disease. But the following are some of the signs of high risks of getting the disease:
- Shortness of breath or trouble breathing, especially with physical exertion
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, abdomen (stomach area) and veins in the neck
- Fainting during physical activity
- irregular heartbeats
- Chest pain, especially after physical exertion or heavy meals
- Heart murmurs
Recognising these signs or symptoms early and getting a proper diagnosis enables effective treatment.
Source – American Heart Foundation
SAMWUMED cover for Cardiomyopathy
Fortunately SAMWUMED covers its members on both Option A and Option for Cardiomyopathy as part of Chronic Disease cover. To access the benefit members have to be registered.
How to register and obtain medication for a chronic condition
Your treating doctor will need to call our Managed Care Provider, Medscheme on:
0860 33 33 87 to register your Chronic Medication.