Shortness of breath while bending over 'new heart failure symptom'
Researchers have defined a novel heart failure symptom in advanced heart failure patients
The condition, which UT Southwestern cardiologists named "bendopnea," is an easily detectable symptom that can help doctors diagnose excessive fluid retention in patients with heart failure, according to the findings.
Dr. Jennifer Thibodeau, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine in the Division of Cardiology, said that some patients thought they were short of breath because they were out of shape or overweight, but we wondered if there was something more to it, asserting that so we developed this study to further investigate this symptom.
Dr. Thibodeau cautions that bendopnea is not a risk factor for heart failure, but rather a symptom that heart failure patients are becoming sicker and may need to have their medications or treatments adjusted.
UT Southwestern doctors enrolled 102 patients who were referred to the cardiac catheterization lab for right heart catheterization and found that nearly one-third of the subjects had bendopnea.
When the patients were lying flat, clinicians measured both the pressures within the heart as well as the cardiac output - how well the heart is pumping blood to the rest of the body - in all 102 patients. Then, they repeated these measurements in 65 patients after they were sitting in a chair for two minutes, and then bending over for one minute.
The study has been published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Heart Failure.
(Posted on 19-03-2014)