How Does a Low Sodium Dies Affect My Health?

Moving to a low sodium diet might help save your life. A high sodium diet is all-too-common with the prevalence of fast food restaurants and processed foods growing throughout the world. High sodium levels, however, pose many risks to the health of the heart. On the contrary, a low sodium diet reduces all of these risks and increases overall health. What is a Low Sodium Diet? A low sodium diet is exactly what it sounds like. It is a diet that includes low levels of sodium. To lower the level of sodium within a diet requires removing or minimizing the amount of foods that are high in sodium while replacing them with low sodium alternatives. Processed foods which are often found in cans or boxes are typically the highest sources of sodium. Food purchased at many restaurants, especially fast food restaurants, are also often high in sodium. As well, salt is extremely high in sodium. Reducing salt is one of the most effective methods of adhering to a low sodium diet, but there are many other ways to remove high levels of sodium from one’s diet. For example, nutrition labels let people know how much sodium is present per serving. Many restaurants also publish nutritional information which can be examined to determine what low-sodium dishes could be purchased in lieu of high sodium alternatives. Lastly, meats and dairy include much higher levels of sodium than fruits and vegetables. Reducing the amount of meat and dairy in one’s diet is one step toward lower sodium. Replacing them with fruits and veggies can also aid in creating a low sodium diet....

What Is a Pulse Deficit?

A pulse deficit is a condition which affects the relationship between the pulse and heart. It can be very dangerous if not treated properly, so understanding what a pulse deficit is important. This is especially true if heart conditions run in the family. There is no need to worry, however. Once you know the symptoms of pulse deficit, it’ll be much easier to treat it appropriately. And, fortunately, there are many treatments for pulse deficit that are easily available. What is a Pulse Deficit? When the heart beats blood through the body, it can be felt as a pulse. This pulse is caused by the vibrations of the blood moving through the arteries. Typically, the pulse rate is in synchronization with the heartbeat. This means that every time the heart beats, there is a pulse rate. However, there are times when the heart beats faster than the pulse rate. When there are fewer pulses than heartbeats, a pulse deficit develops. This sometimes referred to as “irregular heartbeat” or “atypical pulse rate”. Causes of a Pulse Deficit There are many reasons why a pulse deficit may develop including: Heightened states of anxiety Following a period of exercise or other physical activity Situations of extreme or chronic pain Heavy blood loss When the body is wounded Low blood pressure or hypotension Heart disease Heart failure Overactive thyroid gland It’s also important to consider which heart valve needs replacing. If the mitral valve (valve responsible for closing off the upper left chamber of the heart) requires a replacement, a mechanical heart valve is said to last until age 70. However, if it’s...

All About Mechanical Heart Valves

What is a Mechanical Heart Valve? A mechanical heart valve functions similarly to a tissue valve. Its purpose is to allow blood to flow through the heart by opening and closing with each heartbeat, just like a healthy heart valve. While tissue valves are made from animal tissue such as pig or cow, mechanical valves utilize materials such as pyrolytic carbon, titanium coated with pyrolytic carbon, Teflon, polyester, or dacron, depending on the specific valve and component of the valve. This makes mechanical heart valves more durable than tissue heart valves. Advantages of a Mechanical Heart Valve Because of their durability, mechanical heart valves are much longer lasting than tissue valves, which means you most likely won’t need a replacement further down the line. This isn’t the case with tissue valves, which typically need replacing after 10 to 18 years. It’s also important to consider which heart valve needs replacing. If the mitral valve (valve responsible for closing off the upper left chamber of the heart) requires a replacement, a mechanical heart valve is said to last until age 70. However, if it’s the aortic valve (valve that closes off the lower left heart chamber) that requires a replacement, mechanical heart valves are not as effective beyond age 55. Risks of a Mechanical Heart Valve One of the biggest risks of mechanical heart valves is the formation of blood clots on and around the valve. Sometimes, clots formed on the valve itself lead to the malfunctioning of the mechanical valve. Other times, these blood clots can break off and make their way to the brain, causing strokes. To prevent...

Pulmonary Adhesion and Scar Tissue

Pulmonary Adhesion A pulmonary adhesion may indicate damage from an injury or disease. Scar tissue builds up where damage has occurred. Pulmonary adhesion treatment may help to reduce pain and difficulty. Since pulmonary adhesion may become cancerous, treatment is critical. Scar tissue within the lungs may be caused by repeated bouts of bronchitis or pneumonia. Over time, the damage from the diseases may cause the lung lining to separate from the muscle tissue surrounding the chest cavity, a painful condition known as pleurisy. Scar Tissue The scarring in the lungs make it difficult for the organs to do their important work. Scar tissue buildup can block the airflow and prevent the normal functioning of the lungs. If you suffer from difficulty breathing or persistent chest pain, it is best to talk to your doctor right away.The best way for your doctor to determine a course of treatment is for him to diagnose the source of the discomfort and difficulty. Pulmonary Adhesion Treatment It is best to seek a physician as soon as you begin to notice abnormalities in breathing or chest pain. Many treatments are most effective when the adhesion is less pronounced. The treatment may include taking biopsies of the affected area to determine the cause of the problems. Adhesions can often be removed laparoscopically, allowing you to avoid invasive surgery. Your doctor is your best source of information and advice when it comes to pulmonary adhesion treatment. Call or visit our website to schedule your visit today. Don’t allow your lung health to...

Signs of Valvular Heart Disease

What are the Signs of Valvular Heart Disease? The symptoms of valvular heart disease may range from subtle to extreme. Rapid weight gain, fever, dizziness, fainting, fatigue, and palpitations may indicate valvular heart disease. Whether the problem is on the mitral or aortic valves, the challenges can create serious problems. What Is Valvular Heart Disease Valvular heart disease is any problem within the heart that affects the valves. The four valves within the heart, the aortic, mitral, tricuspid and pulmonary valves, control the movement of blood around the heart. If one or more of the valves become damaged, it is considered valvular heart disease. What you should Know About Valvular Heart Disease When all of the valves within the heart are functioning normally, the tricuspid mitral valves control the blood flow between the ventricles and atria= the upper and lower parts of your heart. The aortic valve controls blood flow between your heart and the main vessel within the body, the aorta, while the pulmonary valve controls the blood flow from the lungs. The aortic and mitral valves are the most commonly affected by valvular heart disease. Symptoms Of Valvular Heart Disease The symptoms of valvular heart disease may include rapid weight gain, fever, dizziness, fainting, fatigue, and palpitations or chest pain. Even if your symptoms seem mild, it is important to seek a doctor’s advice immediately if you suggest you have any problem with the heart and lungs. If you are experiencing any symptoms of valvular heart disease, particularly if you have a history of heart disease in your personal history or in your family, talk to your...

What are My Options for AFIB Treatment?

Atrial Fibrillation, or AFib, is a condition which causes your heart rate to be irregular or too fast. Treatments for AFib need not be invasive. In fact, Dr. Ciuffo offers several options that avoid the traditional approach of open-heart surgery to treat your atrial fibrillation. Atrial Fibrillation The symptoms of Atrial fibrillation may range from mild to severe. Symptoms may include shortness of breath, heart palpitations, and weakness. Left untreated, AFib may begin to have an impact on your quality of life. The condition itself isn’t life-threatening, but the symptoms can be debilitating in the extreme. Since AFib can have an impact on your ability to exercise and carry out normal everyday tasks, it can cause you to become less fit, in turn putting more strain on your heart and causing other conditions to develop or worsen. AFib The best treatments for AFib will depend upon how long you’ve had the condition, how severely your life is impacted, and the cause of the condition. All the treatments strive to regulate your heart rate, reset the rhythm of the heart, and prevent blood clots. The causes of AFIB are varied and not all are known. High blood pressure, a history of heart attack, congenital defects, abnormal heart valves, coronary artery disease, and an overactive thyroid gland may contribute to the development of AFIB. Treatment Options for AFIB There are several treatment options for AFIB. A consultation with Dr. Ciuffo will be necessary to determine which is the most appropriate to your case. Contact us today to make an appointment for your consultation and begin treatment for your AFIB condition. Dr....