Cardiomyopathy is a type of heart muscle disease that occurs when the heart muscle becomes enlarged, weak and stiff. It can be caused by genetics or from alcohol or drug use.


Cardiomyopathy is a condition that affects the heart muscle. It can be caused by genetics or from alcohol or drug use, and it may lead to heart failure, which is fatal if left untreated. Cardiomyopathy can be treated with medication and surgery to help improve blood flow through the body.


Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscle. It can be caused by genetics or from alcohol or drug use, but it’s also possible to develop cardiomyopathy as a result of other conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, or coronary artery disease.

There are different types of cardiomyopathy:

  • Dilated – When your left ventricle dilates (gets bigger) and cannot contract properly, blood may not flow through properly either. This can cause symptoms like shortness of breath during exertion; fatigue; swelling in feet and ankles; swollen abdomen due to fluid retention; dizziness upon standing up quickly from sitting position; rapid heartbeat (palpitations) with no apparent cause such as exercise stress tests


Cardiomyopathy symptoms can vary from person to person. Symptoms may be mild or severe, and they often vary in intensity over time. Some people may experience only one or two of these symptoms, while others have many more. Some common cardiomyopathy symptoms include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue (tiredness) that is not improved by rest
  • Heart palpitations (a fast heartbeat) or chest pain that worsens when you exercise or are active for long periods of time; this is called exertional dyspnea

Some people with cardiomyopathy will also experience other less common symptoms such as:

  • Swelling in the legs and feet due to increased fluid retention (edema)

The severity of your specific symptoms depends on their cause and how advanced they are at the time they start being noticed by you or your doctor.

Causes and risk factors

Cardiomyopathy is a disorder of the heart muscle. There are many causes, including genetics and obesity. Alcohol use is also a risk factor for cardiomyopathy.

Genetic mutations can cause a person to develop inherited forms of the disease, while other types are acquired through lifestyle choices such as drug abuse or smoking cigarettes. In some cases, both genetic predisposition and environmental factors contribute to developing cardiomyopathy.


Cardiomyopathy is diagnosed with a physical exam, blood tests and an electrocardiogram (ECG). A 24-hour Holter monitor or an electrophysiology study may also be used to diagnose cardiomyopathy. An echocardiogram can also be used to diagnose the condition.

Treatment and medications

Treatment for cardiomyopathy depends on the underlying cause and may include:

  • Medications to control symptoms. These include aspirin, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, diuretics and ACE inhibitors.
  • Surgery to repair damage caused by the heart muscle’s failure to pump blood effectively (ventricular septal defect repair).
  • Devices such as pacemakers or implantable defibrillators that provide electrical impulses to assist your heart if it begins beating too fast or too slowly or skips beats altogether. Your doctor may recommend one of these devices if you have congestive heart failure and are at risk for sudden death from arrhythmias (irregular heartbeat). You may also need one if you’ve had a heart attack caused by severe blockages in one or more coronary arteries; this type of device helps prevent another attack by keeping oxygenated blood flowing through blood vessels into the heart muscle whenever they become dangerously narrowed again due to plaque buildup on their walls; however there are risks associated with their use including infection at implantation sites which can lead to device failure so talk with your healthcare provider before deciding whether this treatment option is right for you!


  • Avoid smoking, drinking alcohol and using drugs.
  • Avoid eating foods that are high in saturated fats.
  • Don’t do strenuous exercise if you have cardiomyopathy or if you’re at risk for developing it.

Cardiomyopathy is a type of heart muscle disease, and it can be caused by genetics or from alcohol or drug use.

Cardiomyopathy is a type of heart muscle disease, and it can be caused by genetics or from alcohol or drug use. Cardiomyopathy causes the heart to become enlarged and unable to pump blood effectively. If left untreated, this condition may lead to congestive heart failure (CHF).

The symptoms of cardiomyopathy include:

  • Shortness of breath with activity
  • Fatigue with exercise
  • Irregular heartbeat


Cardiomyopathy is a serious condition that can lead to heart failure or even death. It’s important to know the signs and get treatment as soon as possible so you can live a healthy life.