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Don't fail your heart health - Harvard Health

Here’s how to recognize and treat the type of heart failure that’s most common in older adults.

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Heart failure conjures up the image of your heart suddenly stopping. But it actually means the heart is not pumping as it should. The condition is the leading cause of hospitalization for adults over age 65.

"Heart failure is an abrupt wake-up call for people to address their heart health practices," says Dr. Akshay Suvas Desai, medical director of the Cardiomyopathy and Heart Failure Program at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. "Still, heart failure can be prevented in high-risk individuals, and the outlook for those with heart failure continues to improve."

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