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Heart Failure

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NEWS
January 24, 2016 | By Stacey Burling, Inquirer Staff Writer
Janet Dunn, a nurse-practitioner who specializes in heart failure and palliative care, raised the issue of hospice for more than a month with James Berry, one of her patients. Berry, a retired data-center manager, would have none of it. He hoped God would fix his failing heart. "God gave me the knowledge and sent me to take care of you," said Dunn, who knew there was no cure for heart failure. That didn't work. Then, in mid-December, Berry, a 77-year-old stroke and heart attack survivor, had a bad weekend.
NEWS
October 27, 2014 | By Tom Avril, Inquirer Staff Writer
Heart failure is characterized by a heart muscle that is weak, stretched out, and flabby, and therefore unable to pump enough blood. Patients with advanced disease have trouble walking more than a few steps without gasping for breath. A new cuff-like device is designed to help patients by doing some of the pumping for them. The cuff is wrapped around the ascending aorta, and it contains a plastic balloon that squeezes in time with the patient's heartbeat, apparently providing relief to some patients in a small study published this month.
NEWS
July 27, 2014 | By Tom Avril, Inquirer Staff Writer
Patients with heart failure engage in a delicate balancing act all year round, taking care not to drink too much liquid because the weakened heart muscle cannot cope with excess fluid. But what is a person supposed to do during those blast-furnace days of July and August? Perspiration depletes the body of fluids and electrolytes, such as potassium, that are needed for proper heart function. The patient, who is typically also taking a diuretic to excrete excess fluid, then feels the need to drink more water.
SPORTS
December 3, 2012 | Daily News Wire Reports
RICK MAJERUS, the jovial basketball-obsessed coach who led Utah to the 1998 NCAA final and had only one losing season in 25 years with four schools, died Saturday. He was 64. Majerus died of heart failure in a Los Angeles hospital. Saint Louis athletic director Chris May said in a statement that what he would remember most about Majerus "was his enduring passion to see his players excel both on and off the court. " The school announced Nov. 19 that Majerus wouldn't return to Saint Louis because of the heart condition.
NEWS
September 2, 2014 | By Tom Avril, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tyrone Conner's heart was in such bad shape that he could barely walk up a flight of steps. "I felt like I was 80 years old," said Conner, 50, of Norristown. He also suffered from sleep apnea, snoring heavily and gasping for breath every night. What he did not initially realize was that the two problems were linked. Conner's physicians, at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, made the connection, but many do not. Sleep apnea afflicts as many as 60 percent of patients with heart failure - the term for a weakened heart muscle that cannot keep up with the body's demands.
LIVING
September 4, 2000 | By Marie McCullough, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The case was dramatic but not unique. A young heart-failure patient whose only hope seemed to be a heart transplant improved so much recently that he was able to get off the transplant waiting list, return to his job, even mow his lawn. Dr. Jagat Narula believes the key to the patient's improvement was carvedilol, a type of drug known as a beta blocker. "Carvedilol has done wonders for many patients," said Narula, a heart-failure and heart-transplant specialist at Hahnemann University Hospital.
NEWS
September 1, 2014 | By Marie McCullough, Inquirer Staff Writer
In a huge international study, an experimental drug for heart failure worked dramatically better than the current backbone of treatment, paving the way for the biggest therapeutic advance in decades. Novartis' twice-a-day pill, still known by its code name, LCZ696, reduced deaths, hospitalizations, and disabling symptoms of heart failure. It also had fewer serious side effects than the standard therapy, a blood-pressure-lowering medication called enalapril. "We designed this study to try to change the cornerstone of treatment - to replace enalapril," said the study's lead co-author, Milton Packer, a cardiologist and heart failure researcher at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
NEWS
December 22, 2000 | by April Adamson, Daily News Staff Writer
A team of doctors surrounded Nancy Coupland's hospital bed, shouting out orders and sticking her with needles. She knew now how dire the situation was: Her unborn baby's heart was speeding. Her own heart was failing. Earlier that same week, her top priority had been rushing to finish Christmas shopping, filling each minute with another errand. Now each minute meant life or death. "I wrote my husband a long letter. I gave everybody instructions for what to do with my kids," recalled Coupland.
NEWS
May 10, 1994 | By Martha Woodall, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Retired Cardinal John Krol, hospitalized yesterday morning at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital after complaining of shortness of breath, is suffering from congestive heart failure, his physician said. Cardinal Krol, 83, was in fair condition in the hospital's intermediate coronary care unit. In addition to breathing problems, the cardinal experienced some swelling of his legs. "He is in his usual good spirits and is responding well to therapy," said Dr. Joseph Majdan, Cardinal Krol's cardiologist.
NEWS
May 30, 1997 | By Donna Shaw, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Coreg, the first in a new class of medicines for congestive heart failure, was approved yesterday by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, creating what experts called an important weapon against the biggest killer of older Americans. In clinical testing, Coreg dramatically reduced deaths and hospitalizations when combined with other, standard therapies for patients with mild or moderate heart failure, scientists said. "The data are very clear on this," said Peter Kowey, a Lankenau Hospital researcher who served on a monitoring board that oversaw a Coreg clinical trial.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
July 18, 2016 | By Lauren Feiner, Staff Writer
David Willis Johnson, 83, of Solebury, who led the Campbell Soup Co. with infectious optimism in the 1990s, died of heart failure in Doylestown on Sunday, June 19. Mr. Johnson, a native of Australia, served as president and chief executive officer of Campbell from 1990 to 1997, and again from March 2000 to January 2001 after coming out of retirement as the company sought a new leader. He was brought in by Campbell's at a time when the Dorrance family, which had dominated the company for decades, had considered selling its shares.
NEWS
July 9, 2016
By George Heyrich When it comes to a heart attack, minutes matter most. With today's modern medicine, hospitals can stop a heart attack in its tracks. However, if you wait too long to seek care, your risk of permanent heart damage is higher, which could lead to heart failure or death. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 735,000 Americans experience a heart attack every year. The clock starts at the onset of the first heart-attack symptom. This is where rapid intervention saves lives.
NEWS
July 1, 2016 | By Walter F. Naedele, Staff Writer
In 1992, John A. DiFiori, a retired South Philadelphia High School biology teacher, rode his bicycle from Manhattan Beach, Calif., to Revere, Mass., as part of an annual seven-week group event, Pedal for Power Across America. The former League of American Wheelmen ran the tour as a fund-raising event, with Mr. DiFiori cycling for an environmental program at his former school. He had retired in 1991, the year he turned 59, but long-distance cycling had been in his bones for years.
NEWS
June 25, 2016 | By Tom Avril, Staff Writer
Scott Shapiro treats patients with clogged arteries, heart failure, and other classic cardiovascular diseases that strike millions of adults. Yet over the next year, the cardiologist says, he will spend dozens of hours cramming to learn intricate details about other conditions that he does not treat in his Abington practice, such as rare congenital heart defects. He and other leaders of the Pennsylvania Medical Society are part of heated national debate over how to ensure that physicians maintain their skills.
NEWS
June 11, 2016 | By Walter F. Naedele, Staff Writer
Richard Ferry had been retired for only a short while in the early 1990s when he met and began golfing with another retiree, Robert F. Keddie. "He was a very good golfer," Ferry said, and perhaps Mr. Keddie's workday had something to do with it. "He worked the night shift," from 4 p.m. to midnight, Ferry said, making tanker deliveries for Texaco to gasoline stations in South Jersey. That schedule had allowed him morning tee times on any workday he chose. In retirement, the two men were in a foursome that played public courses, including Rancocas Golf Club in Willingboro, Willowbrook Country Club in Delran, and Hanover Golf Club in North Hanover Township, three times a week.
NEWS
May 28, 2016 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Staff Writer
James J. Matour, 91, of East Falls, a World War II veteran and a retired executive with the Philadelphia Gas Works, died Monday, May 23, of heart failure at home. Mr. Matour grew up in Germantown. He graduated second in his class at Simon Gratz High School in 1942 and entered what is now Drexel University to major in mechanical engineering. In 1943, he interrupted his studies to enlist in the Army Air Corps. He was a B-17 bomber pilot, and flew 19 bombing missions over Nazi Germany in 1944 and 1945.
NEWS
May 22, 2016 | By Thomas Metkus, For The Inquirer
A woman in her early 70s received a call from her son one night to tell her his recent colonoscopy results: The screening showed he had colon cancer. Very upset over the news, she awoke that night with severe, crushing chest pain and labored breathing. She called 911 and was taken to the emergency room in the middle of the night. I was on call that night and received a call from the emergency department. I saw that her electrocardiogram and evaluation were consistent with a heart attack.
NEWS
May 20, 2016 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Staff Writer
Donald Wesley Huddle, 90, of West Philadelphia, a former assistant highway chief and one of the city's first African American civil engineers, died Monday, May 9, of heart failure at his home. Born in Pittsburgh to Ernest and Helen Walker Huddle, he moved with his family to New Castle, Pa., and graduated from high school there. He received a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering in 1948 from the University of Pittsburgh. Mr. Huddle served in the Army before being honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant.
NEWS
April 24, 2016 | By Rene Alvarez, For The Inquirer
A woman in her 50s went to her family doctor with a variety of symptoms that could have indicated any number of conditions. She had shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing, nausea, stomach pains, dizziness, and fatigue. Her doctor, noting that she also was significantly overweight and out of shape, believed she was suffering from asthma, and prescribed asthma and antinausea medications. Still, the symptoms persisted for several months. Looking for an answer, the woman went to both a respiratory specialist and digestive specialist, but neither offered treatments that helped her. Finally, one of her doctors, on the theory that she might have a heart problem, sent her to my office.
SPORTS
February 17, 2016 | By Aaron Carter, STAFF WRITER
Inside the 6-foot-7, 170-pound frame of Jake Wilson beats a heart that belongs to basketball. Unfortunately, the Bonner-Prendergast sophomore can't play - for now - the game he loves. At 12, Wilson, now 15, was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome, an inherited disorder that affects the fibers that support and anchor organs and other structures in the body, according to the Mayo Clinic. A related heart valve issue led Wilson's parents and doctors to keep him off the court this season, and Wilson - considered a Division I talent - may never play competitively again.
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