Heart failure is a condition where the heart is weakened and unable to pump blood effectively, resulting in insufficient blood flow to the body’s organs and systems. Heart failure can be acute, meaning that it appears suddenly but goes away relatively quickly. This may be the case following a heart attack or if there are problems with the heart valves.
The majority of cases of heart failure, however, are chronic. This means that symptoms persist and don’t improve over time. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 5.7 million Americans have heart failure. The condition is more common in men, but women are more likely to die from heart failure if it is not treated.