August 21, 2003

New IV Therapy Treatment Available at SCMH

Scotland County Memorial Hospital announces a new IV Therapy available here at the hospital for people who suffer from cardiomyopathy or congestive heart failure.

Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscle. The heart loses its ability to pump blood and, in some instances, heart rhythm is disturbed, leading to irregular heartbeats. Usually, the exact cause of the muscle damage is never found.

Cardiomyopathy differs from many other heart disorders in a couple of ways. First, the types not related to coronary atherosclerosis are fairly uncommon. Cardiomyopathy affects about 50,000 Americans.

Second, unlike many other forms of heart disease that affect middle-aged and older persons, certain types of can, and often do, occur in the young.

Congestive heart failure (CHF), or heart failure, is a condition in which the heart can't pump enough blood to the body's other organs. This can result from narrowed arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle (coronary artery disease); past heart attack, or myocardial infarction with scar tissue that interferes with the heart muscle's normal work; high blood pressure; eart valve disease due to past rheumatic fever or other causes, primary disease of the heart muscle itself, called cardiomyopathy; heart defects present at birth (congenital heart defects); infection of the heart valves and/or heart muscle itself (endocarditis and/or myocarditis).

The "failing" heart keeps working but not as efficiently as it should. People with heart failure can't exert themselves because they become short of breath and tired.

Natrecor is indicated for the intravenous treatment of patients with acutely decompensated congestive heart failure who have labored breathing at rest with minimal activity. The IV therapy binds with certain cells in the heart's smooth muscle and increases smooth muscle cell relaxation.

"The IV therapy may be administered once or twice per week, depending on the individual patient needs," stated Dr. Robert Schneider, Memphis Medical Services.

The baseline testing for possible candidates who would benefit from the Natrecor intravenous treatment can be performed by the Scotland County Hospital Laboratory.

For more information call Scotland County Hospital at 660-465-8511 and ask for Linda Conner, RN, DON.

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