Learn About Cardiomyopathy

What is the definition of Cardiomyopathy?

Cardiomyopathy is disease in which the heart muscle becomes weakened, stretched, or has another structural problem. It often contributes to the heart's inability to pump or function well.

Many people with cardiomyopathy have heart failure.

Dilated cardiomyopathy
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What are the causes of Cardiomyopathy?

There are many types of cardiomyopathy, with different causes. Some of the more common ones are:

  • Dilated cardiomyopathy (also called idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy if there is no known cause) is a condition in which the heart becomes weak and the chambers get large. As a result, the heart cannot pump enough blood out to the body. It can be caused by many medical problems.
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a condition in which the heart muscle becomes thick. This makes it harder for blood to leave the heart. This type of cardiomyopathy is most often passed down through families.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Ischemic cardiomyopathy is caused by a narrowing of the arteries that supply the heart with blood. It makes the heart walls thin so they do not pump well.
  • Restrictive cardiomyopathy is a group of disorders. The heart chambers are unable to fill with blood because the heart muscle is stiff. The most common causes of this type of cardiomyopathy are amyloidosis and scarring of the heart from an unknown cause.
  • Peripartum cardiomyopathy occurs during pregnancy or in the first 5 months afterward.
Peripartum cardiomyopathy
What are the current treatments for Cardiomyopathy?

When possible, the cause of cardiomyopathy is treated. Medicines and lifestyle changes are often needed to treat the symptoms of heart failure, angina and abnormal heart rhythms.

Procedures or surgeries may also be used, including:

  • A defibrillator that sends an electrical pulse to stop life-threatening abnormal heart rhythms
  • A pacemaker that treats a slow heart rate or helps the heart beat in a more coordinated fashion
  • Coronary artery bypass (CABG) surgery or angioplasty that may improve blood flow to the damaged or weakened heart muscle
  • Heart transplant that may be tried when all other treatments have failed

Partially and fully implantable mechanical heart pumps have been developed. These may be used for very severe cases. However, not all people need this advanced treatment.

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What is the outlook (prognosis) for Cardiomyopathy?

The outlook depends on many different things, including:

  • Cause and type of cardiomyopathy
  • The severity of the heart problem
  • How long the problem has been present
  • How well the condition responds to treatment

Heart failure is most often a long-term (chronic) illness. It may get worse over time. Some people develop severe heart failure. In this case, medicines, surgery, and other treatments may no longer help.

People with certain types of cardiomyopathy are at risk for dangerous heart rhythm problems.

Heart - section through the middle
Heart - front view
What are the latest Cardiomyopathy Clinical Trials?
A Randomized, Double-Blind, Dose Finding and Comparison Study of the Safety and Efficacy of a High Dose of Eteplirsen, Preceded by an Open-label Dose Escalation, in Patients With Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy With Deletion Mutations Amenable to Exon 51 Skipping

Summary: This study will be comprised of 2 parts: Part 1 (dose escalation) will be conducted to evaluate the safety and tolerability of 2 doses (100 milligrams/kilogram [mg/kg] and 200 mg/kg) of eteplirsen in approximately 10 participants with DMD; Part 2 (dose finding and dose comparison) will be conducted for the selection of a high dose (100 mg/kg versus 200 mg/kg) and its comparison with the 30 mg/kg d...

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APOLLO-B: A Phase 3, Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Multicenter Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Patisiran in Patients With Transthyretin Amyloidosis With Cardiomyopathy (ATTR Amyloidosis With Cardiomyopathy)

Summary: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of patisiran in participants with ATTR amyloidosis with cardiomyopathy.

What are the Latest Advances for Cardiomyopathy?
Single coronary ostium with obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy treated using the Morrow procedure: a case report.
Early identification of Lyme disease complications.
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Mitochondrial augmentation of hematopoietic stem cells in children with single large-scale mitochondrial DNA deletion syndromes.
Who are the sources who wrote this article ?

Published Date: May 08, 2022
Published By: Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

What are the references for this article ?

Hershberger RE. The dilated, restrictive, and infiltrative cardiomyopathies. In: Libby P, Bonow RO, Mann DL, Tomaselli GF, Bhatt DL, Solomon SD, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 12th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2022:chap 52.

Heidenreich PA, Bozkurt B, Aguilar D, et al. 2022 AHA/ACC/HFSA guideline for the management of heart failure: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Joint Committee on Clinical Practice Guidelines. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2022;79(17):e263-e421. PMID: 35379503 pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35379503/.

McKenna WJ, Elliott PM. Diseases of the myocardium and endocardium. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 54.

McMurray JJV, Pfeffer MA. Heart failure: management and prognosis. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 53.

Rogers JG, O'Connor CM. Heart failure: pathophysiology and diagnosis. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 52.