-- Robert Preidt
THURSDAY, March 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Shortness of breath
while bending over is a newly identified symptom of advanced heart
failure, researchers say.
This obvious symptom can help alert doctors that heart failure
patients have excessive fluid retention, according to cardiologists
from the UT Southwestern Medical Center, in Dallas.
"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," study first author Dr. Jennifer Thibodeau said in a medical center news release.
"So we developed this study to further investigate this symptom," said Thibodeau, an assistant professor of internal medicine in the center's division of cardiology.
The researchers identified the condition -- which they called
bendopnea -- after assessing 102 heart patients.
"We discovered that patients with bendopnea had too much fluid in their bodies, causing elevated pressures," Thibodeau said. When they bent forward, these pressures increased even more."
The study was published recently in the
Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Heart
In heart failure, the heart can't pump enough blood to meet the
body's needs, according to the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood
Bendopnea is not a risk factor for heart failure, but rather a
sign that heart failure is becoming more serious and patients might
require changes to their medications or treatments, Thibodeau
There are 5.7 million Americans with heart failure, and about 10
percent of them have advanced heart failure, according to the
American Heart Association.
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more
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