Heart Failure and Life Expectancy

It should be no surprise at this point that exercise and a healthy diet have a huge impact on the quality of our lives.  Exercise and diet have an especially high impact on the health of our heart.  Heart disease, and ultimately congestive heart failure is the number one killer in America.  Luckily for us, it is also something that can be prevented, or at the very least, delayed, by making proper exercise and diet choices. 

Dr. Khan has graciously given us his take on congestive heart failure and life expectancy.  Read this and let the information sink in.  Remember, by doing exercise (running, weight lifting, swimming, yoga, basketball, etc.) you can directly influence the quality of your life and well-being for the positive.

The human heart is an important organ of the cardiovascular system. This is the organ that is responsible for pumping blood to all parts of the body. However, there are many conditions that can affect this organ. One such severe condition is congestive heart failure. Congestive heart failure is a condition wherein the heart fails to work properly and so, does not pump out adequate amount of blood to the various organs in the body. This is a serious condition which can affect the heart and if not dealt with in time, can be fatal. Due to the severity of this condition, many people are worried about the mortality rate and the congestive heart failure life expectancy.

What is the Life Expectancy in Congestive Heart Failure?

Unfortunately, when it comes to someone, the life expectancy with congestive heart failure, there is no definitive time span that has been documented. Even doctors who have been dealing with patients suffering from congestive heart failure are wary of giving any notion of a stipulated time span. This is so for several reasons. Firstly, the life expectancy for congestive heart failure patients is dependent on many factors. These include the severity of the disease and the stage of the disease and the kind of care and treatment meted out to the person. There are different stages of congestive heart failure and so, if the condition is identified early on, then it is easier to treat the person, as compared to a person who is in congestive heart failure end stage.

Although it is not possible to exactly state the congestive heart failure life expectancy, many people suffering from congestive heart failure go on to live for many years. However, around seven out of ten people die of the disorder within ten years of being diagnosed. As mentioned earlier, life expectancy depends on how severe the heart failure is, whether its cause can be corrected and what kind of treatment is meted out and when. About half of the population that has had mild heart failure lives for at least ten years and about half of those who have severe heart failure live for at least two years. Although the life expectancy does substantially improve with treatment, eventually, for a person with chronic heart failure, the quality of life will mostly deteriorate. The treatment options for a person may also gradually become limited as time passes. This is the reason why the prognosis for congestive heart failure in the elderly is relatively poor. However, in the end, nothing can be said conclusively, as there haven’t been any definitive recent studies regarding congestive heart failure life expectancy. This is the reason why no accurate statistics exist to validate a final range of life expectancy of people suffering from this condition.

All said and done, most doctors say that it is best to not rely on reports regarding congestive heart failure life expectancy. To be frank, one needs to understand that the entire concept of ‘life expectancy’ is in itself a highly misunderstood one. This is because, in the end, when one calculates the life expectancy after a certain detailed study regarding a few cases, then it is merely an aggregate of all the cases. Thus, there may be a case of a person who died immediately after a bypass surgery and there may also be a case of a person who went on to live for another fifty years. Thus, in actuality, the term ‘congestive heart failure life expectancy’ itself says very little about the real prognosis and future possibilities and systemic complications that may eventually occur with regards to this condition. Thus, it is best to not get disheartened, nor overly optimistic by looking at statistics on the life expectancy of patients suffering from congestive heart failure, but to instead try and get the best possible treatment and leave the rest to God.

Article by Dr. Sumaiya Khan


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