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How to make the heart stronger?
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How to make the heart stronger?

Hi everyone im just wondering how to make the heart stronger after a viral inflamation (inflammation) of the heart muscle. Im an 18 year old male and i year ago some kind of a virus came on my heart muscle. The result was dilated cardiomyopathy. At that time my ef was 30% now its somewhere betwen 40 and 44%. All i was doing to get it beter was walking but mow i just want to know is there anything that can help me in the proces exept just walking. Do u ppl know maybe some exercises that are good for recovering the heart streingth and increasing the ef.
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Avatar_m_tn
You should talk to your cardiologist and work with him on a progressive exercise program. He's the guy who knows the most about the specifics of your condition.
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187666_tn?1331176945
Ha, you beat me to the punch. I was thinking the same thing. I know of people with cardiomyopathy. With proper meds and exercise their EF has improved and they feel better. But it's all monitored by their cardiologist.  MILOSH:  Definitely, talk to the doc about exercise programs and limits.
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Avatar_n_tn
Yes i know but the problem is i wont se my cardiologist for the next few montsh. The last time i saw him he told me that when im walkin i could try to run but for a very short time ofcourse. Before this i weight lifting ofcours im not gona do that now. But i was thinking maybe just a few lifts with very low weight about 2-3 kilograms with regulating breathing. Whot do u ppl think?
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21064_tn?1309312333
Have medications been effective in improving your EF?  Are you taking an ace inhibitor?
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Avatar_n_tn
I have used an exercycle regularly for many years (40 minutes 5x/week). It's a good way to build up your cardio capacity and can be done during bad weather or in the small hours of the morning if you can't sleep.

Be sure to try before buying - you don't have to spend a ton of money, but it's important to have a heavy flywheel - I prefer magnetic braking to friction drag because it's smoother.
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61536_tn?1340701763
Hey there.  Glad to hear your EF is improving.  Personally I would avoid any weight lifting until your EF normalizes (gets to 50%) which it sounds like is a possibility for you with your increasing numbers.  

Exercise doesn't improve EF, but it will strengthen your heart in other ways and prevent deconditioning.  It will also improve your mood and outlook, to be sure.  I do believe there is a benefit to be gained from exercise physically for the heart.  The big thing would be don't over-do it.  Take things slow, try to get 30 minutes of exercise at least three times per week, and preferably walking briskly.  You don't need to run, but if your cardiologist gave you the OK there chouldn't be any harm in it.  Doing too much exercise could actually have a detrimental effect on your function though, so listen to your body and don't press it past your limits.  

With your nice improvement so far, I hope you can look forward to a very normal EF in the near future and get back to doing everything without giving cardiomyopathy a second thought.  Still though, remember that weight lifting can strain the left ventricle...I would personally be a bit wary of that.

Sending good thoughts your way for a continued and full recovery :)
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61536_tn?1340701763
I just did two research papers for my college class on cardiomyopathy (idiopathic and peripartum), so I'm overflowing with information right now ;)

You're right, the meds themselves don't correct your heart, they allow your heart the opportunity to correct itself.  In some cardiomyopathies, cardiomyocytes (heart muscle cells) are just weakened, not dead or permanently damaged.  We actually have more heart cells than we need, which is a good thing in situations like this.  There's still enough for reserve in some cases.  When some of the extra burden is taken off of the heart via medications and rest, those cells can sometimes recover.  In your case, it seems you are definitely improving, and that is a really positive sign.

Usually when someone is diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, doctors will tell them to avoid strenuous exercise - particularly anything that makes them grunt like lifting - for at least six months out from diagnosis.  Walking is an excellent cardiovascular exercise for people of nearly all health and fitness levels.

Your determination to regain your health will bring you far, I think.  Attitude is a LOT.
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Avatar_n_tn
Well im taking alot of meds (lanitop, carvelol, tritace, fursimid) most are for lowernimg blood presure. But i dont think that meds are enought to make the heart beter. I think that the main thing is wanting to improve it. Before this i was living a very active life. I was training bodbuildin, going to clubs a few times a week, drinking changing alot of girlfrieds and then sudenly i wasn able to to it anymore coz i realised i developed cardiomyopathy. At that time i was very depresed and my ef wasnt changing. the most importent thing uleast in my opinio was when i decided i dont wana live like this anymore and that im gona do everything to improve it. And in that period it realy started to improve. So yes the meds are helping but they have to be combined with other things. Like walking, sleping (as much as posible coz the heart is resting then) and being happy for knowing your goal and knowink it can be achived and that is recovery.
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Avatar_n_tn
My EF was 15 to 18 with a dual defibrillator and pacemaker and lots of medication. So I changed my diet and slowly started walking on the treadmill. Six months later my EF is 25 to 28 and I lost 30 pounds. It's amazing how much better I feel. I stopped taking half the medications I was on (directed by my doctor), because of how much better I was doing, and life is a lot better. So if you ask me, diet and exercise are the key to changing your life. My breathing has gotten a lot better. I'm off Advair and Albuterol. My doctor said higher EF numbers have been experienced by many people with exercise and diet. I believe it because I'm seeing results. So it's up to you.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi everyone. I’m 17 years old & I think I have a weak heart. My heart goes crazy when I walk or do some movement. I cant live like this….. need some advice  
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976897_tn?1379171202
MILOSH
            Exercise is always very good for the heart, but the right kind of exercise. It's important to stick to aerobic and not anerobic type exercises. Weights cause a sudden
demand on the heart and you are looking for a gradual increase in demand. Walking is a
great exercise especially if done daily for 30 mins minimum. Start off very slowly and gradually build up the pace over the first 10 mins. This will be gentle to your heart and give it time to respond without shocking the life out of it. Briskly walk for 10 mins and then slow right down again for the last 10 mins to let the heart gently slow down. Imagine
you are running in a new engine, the nicer you are to the engine, the longer it will last
and the more efficient it will become. Don't imagine that strengthening your heart has to
be vigorous training routines. You are looking for your heart to recover, not adapt to run in a marathon. From the progress you've made, I feel sure it will still improve much more.
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367994_tn?1304957193
What you describe as symptoms does not necessarily indicate a weak heart.  It there is a heart problem and not anxiety, the condition is more likely related to your heart's electrical activity.

But for those individuals with a weak heart the best preparation is to have a stress test.  The test monitors your heart rate in relationship to the other functions of the heart, and when, or if you can reach your heart's target rate (220-age less 10%)...that would indicate good physical condition.

However, the expectation will be something less for a weak heart, and the stress test will indicate the proper degree of exertion and calculate an output in the form of METS for the optimum exercise benefit.  There is a table that cross references the degree of exertion (METS) with various activities.  For instance, if 7 METS is your degree of safe and effective aorobic exertion that would be cross referenced with brisk walking at 3.7 miles an hour (that is my exercision level that is most effective).  Or if you swim that can be crossed referenced with METS by timing of how long to take to swim the length of an Olympic sized pool, etc.  Lifting weights is not aerobic and not very good to strengthen  heart muscle.

The stress test is oftened used to determine exercise tolerance...You should be involved in a cadiac-fitness program and tested periodically.  If you have an arrhythmic disorder as you indicate, lifting weights or any exercise that increases your heart rate can put your heart into an irregular and very fast heartbeat.  I have seen several events happen and of course that is an emergency call.

My advice would be to see a doctor and have an EKG test for any rhythm disorder.  You shouldn't try to self- adjust with a routine.  The condition my not happen again for awhile, but can arise when you least expect.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am 24 years old and I have been doing exercise since my childhood but I have a fear in my heart I can say in other words my heart is weak  inside. when something to be happen but my hands start moving due to tension and I am very worried about it Plz tell me what should I do ?????????/
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