Diagnosis: Idiopathic Cardiomyopathy
Treatment: Medical Management with ACE Inhibitors
and Beta Blockers
Brad Price just thought he had a bad chest cold. Eleven years ago he was 28 years old, and considered himself in excellent health. As a postal worker, Brad walked approximately 10 miles a day and enjoyed being active. Over the course of a few weeks, he developed flu-like symptoms with sweats and chills, cough, and a stuffy nose and sore throat. Brad became increasingly fatigued, and had to sleep in a sitting position in order to breathe at night. When he realized he was not getting better with time, he made an appointment with his family practice doctor.
Brad’s physician took a chest X-ray and noticed his heart was significantly enlarged compared to an X-ray from the year before. After running several additional tests, he told Brad to go straight to the hospital. Brad considered fighting through the fatigue to finish the day’s work, but ultimately complied. At the hospital, it was determined that Brad had only a 10 – 15% ejection fraction, or percentage of blood pumped out of the heart with each beat. He was told by doctors that had he returned to work, he may not have lived through the day.
At the Heart Failure Clinic at Intermountain Medical Center, Brad was placed on an ACE inhibitor and beta blocker as well as receiving MAWDS education (MAWDS stands for Medication, Activity, Weight, Diet, and Symptoms.) Over the past 11 years, as Brad has diligently followed the MAWDS guidelines his ejection fraction has returned to normal levels. These days he hardly notices he has a heart condition and enjoys water skiing, hiking, biking, and spending time with his family.