In order to determine the best course of of therapy, physicians often assess the stage of heart failure according to the New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional classification system. This system relates symptoms to everyday activities and the patient's quality of life
1-Class I (Mild)
No limitation of physical activity. Ordinary physical activity does not cause undue fatigue, palpitation,or dyspnea (shortness of breath).
2-Class II (Mild)
Slight limitation of physical activity. Comfortable at rest, but ordinary physical activity results in fatigue, palpitation, or dyspnea.
3-Class III (Moderate)
Marked limitation of physical activity. Comfortable at rest, but less than ordinary activity causes fatigue, palpitation, or dyspnea.
4-Class IV (Severe)
Unable to carry out any physical activity without discomfort. Symptoms of cardiac insufficiency at rest. If any physical activity is undertaken, discomfort is increased.
>>Early diagnosis and treatment are very important, and recently there have been some major steps forward in treatment. Today, doctors can do more than ever, so many people with heart failure can live normal lives and be less at risk for being hospitalized. If you are diagnosed with heart failure, there are a number of medications that work together to improve your symptoms and help keep your heart failure from getting worse. Taking these medicines, in addition to eating right and getting regular exercise, will help improve your health
In its early stages, heart failure can often be managed with medication and a healthy lifestyle. As the disease progresses and the heart becomes weaker, treatment gets more complex. This is the time to have difficult, yet important, conversations with your family and doctor about the care you want to receive.
>>In the end stage or the 4th stage of heart failure beside the treatments given in the fisrt 3 stages given before ,Inotropic therapy is used in end-stage heart failure to help relieve and control heart failure symptoms so that you are better able to perform your daily activities. These medications are only used when other drugs no longer control heart failure symptoms.
Inotropic therapy, also known as heart pump medication, stimulates an injured or weakened heart to pump harder. The primary purpose of this medication is to increase the force of the heart muscle's contractions. Inotropic therapy may also speed up the heart's rhythm.
Inotropic therapy for heart failure is first administered in the hospital where you can be closely monitored.
Dobutamine and milrinone are intravenous (through the vein) medications administered by an infusion pump to help ensure the dose is accurate. These drugs may be ordered by your doctor to be given continuously or periodically over 6 to 72 hours, one or more times per week.
Even if you feel well, do not discontinue your inotropic therapy medication from your intravenous catheter line or from your infusion pump without consulting your doctor. If you are discharged from the hospital with an inotropic medication, a home health nurse will provide specific directions on how to care for your intravenous site, catheter, and infusion pump.