Dilated Cardiomyopathy


The Full form of DCM is Dilated Cardiomyopathy. DCM is when the heart’s ability to pump blood is reduced because the left ventricle (its main pumping chamber), is enlarged and weakened. In some cases, this prevents the heart from filling with blood as it should. Over time, it can affect the other chambers of the heart. Many people with DCM have no symptoms. Some those do have only minor ones, and live a normal life. Others develop symptoms that may get worse as their heart gets sicker. The symptoms of DCM can happen at any age and may include fatigue, swelling of legs, shortness of breath, weight gain, fainting, Dizziness or light headedness, Palpitations (fluttering in the chest due to abnormal heart rhythms), Chest pain or pressure, Sudden death. DCM can be inherited, but usually it is caused by other things and includes Alcoholism, Thyroid disease, Diabetes, Severe coronary artery disease, Viral infections of the heart, Heart valve abnormalities, Drugs that damage the heart. Your doctor will decide if you have DCM after he looks at things like your symptoms, your family history, a physical exam, Blood tests, an electrocardiogram (ECG), a ct scan, an mri, a chest X-ray, an echocardiogram, an exercise stress test, cardiac catheterization.