What are the symptoms of heart failure?
Problems with breathing are among the most common symptoms of heart failure. Some breathing problems occur when fluid backs up in the lungs and the surrounding tissues (sometimes known as congestive heart failure). This fluid backup can cause:
- Breathlessness after mild exercise
- Asthma-like wheezing or dry cough a few hours after lying down
If breathing problems occur when you lie flat, you may need to elevate your head or sit in a recliner to sleep. Advanced stages of heart failure can cause a feeling of suffocation.
Other symptoms of heart failure may include:
- Heart palpitations (pounding heart)
- Difficulty concentrating
- Fainting spells
You may also have difficulty sleeping. At night when you lie down, you may need to urinate more often. Also, fluid backs up into the lungs. Thus, sleep is often interrupted by:
- Trips to the bathroom
- Coughing spells
- Shortness of breath