Myocarditis

Myocarditis or myocardium is a condition of inflammation of the heart muscle. The heart's ability to pump blood may be harmed as a result of the inflammation. Chest pain, shortness of breath, and rapid or irregular heartbeats are all symptoms of myocarditis (arrhythmias).

Myocarditis can be caused by a virus infection and it also can be caused by a medication reaction or a general inflammatory illness.

Severe myocarditis causes the heart to weaken, resulting in insufficient blood flow to the rest of the body. Clots in the heart can cause a stroke or a heart attack.

Myocarditis

Symptoms

Early myocarditis can cause no symptoms in some patients. Others have only minor signs and symptoms such as -

  • Pain in the chest
  • Fatigue
  • Legs, ankles, and feet are swollen.
  • Heartbeats that are fast or irregular (arrhythmias)
  • Shortness of breath during exertion as well as rest.
  • Feeling light-headed
  • Headache, body aches, joint discomfort, fever, or sore throat are flu-like symptoms.

Symptoms in children -

  • Breathing difficulties
  • Chest pain
  • Fainting
  • Fever
  • Rapid breathing

When to see a doctor?

Myocarditis symptoms can be similar to a heart attack. Seek emergency medical attention if you are experiencing inexplicable chest discomfort and shortness of breath.

Get the best treatment for Myocarditis from the best Cardiologists at Medicover Hospitals.


Causes

Infections, certain medications and chemicals, or a disease that produces widespread inflammation can all cause myocarditis. It can also be caused due to variety of factors, including.

Viruses

Myocarditis has been related to a variety of viruses, including those that cause the common cold (adenovirus), COVID-19, hepatitis B and C, and parvovirus (which causes a slight rash in children) and herpes simplex virus.

Gastrointestinal infections

It can also be caused by gastrointestinal infections (echoviruses), mononucleosis, and German measles (rubella). HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, can also cause myocarditis.

Fungi

It can be caused by a fungal infection, especially in those who have weaker immune systems. Yeast infections, such as candida; molds, such as aspergillus; and histoplasma, which is commonly found in bird droppings, are all connected to myocarditis.

Myocarditis can also be caused by the following things:

Medications

Long intake of antibiotics such as penicillin and sulfonamide medicines, as well as several anti-seizure treatments and cocaine can cause this.

Radiation or chemicals

Radiation exposure can trigger cardiac muscle inflammation in some people.

Inflammatory illnesses

Some inflammatory diseases like lupus, Wegener's granulomatosis, giant cell arteritis, and Takayasu's arteritis are all conditions that can induce myocarditis.


Prevention

Adopting the following precautions might help in avoiding infection -

Avoid coming into close touch with sick people

Until someone has recovered from the flu or another respiratory infection, stay away from them. If you have symptoms of a viral infection, try to stay away from others.

Hands should be washed frequently

Hand washing is one of the most effective strategies to avoid being ill and transmitting illness.

Take vaccines

Take current vaccinations, including those that protect against COVID-19, influenza, and rubella, all of which can cause myocarditis.


Diagnosis

Myocarditis must be diagnosed early in order to avoid long-term heart damage. A health care practitioner will normally examine you and listen to your heart using a stethoscope to diagnose myocarditis. Heart health may be assessed by blood and imaging testing. Myocarditis can be confirmed and the severity of the condition determined through imaging testing. The following tests can be used to diagnose myocarditis:

Blood test

Generally blood tests are performed to look for indicators of a heart attack, inflammation, or infection. Proteins linked to heart muscle injury can be detected via a cardiac enzyme test. Antibody blood testing can assist identify a myocarditis-related infection.

An electrocardiogram (ECG)

It is a painless and rapid test that indicates how the heart is beating. An ECG can be used to assess if you have irregular heartbeats by looking for signal patterns (arrhythmias).

X-ray

The size and shape of the heart and lungs can be seen on a chest X-ray. It can reveal whether there is fluid in or around the heart, which could indicate heart failure.

MRI of the heart

This technique creates comprehensive pictures of the heart using magnetic fields and radio waves. A cardiac MRI displays the size, shape, and anatomy of the heart. It may reveal indications of inflammation in the cardiac muscle.

Echocardiogram

Moving images of the beating heart are created by sound waves. Echocardiography can reveal the size of the heart and the flow of blood via the heart and heart valves.

Catheterization

A tiny tube (catheter) is threaded through a blood vessel in the arm to an artery in the heart. Dye is injected into the catheter to assist the heart's arteries (coronary arteries) appear more clearly on X-rays. During this procedure, a small sample of heart muscle tissue (biopsy) may be collected. A lab examines the sample for signs of inflammation or infection.


Treatment

Medication, treatments, and surgeries may be used to treat myocarditis.

Medications

Mild myocarditis may merely necessitate rest and medicines. Medication can aid in the removal of excess fluid from the body while also reducing the strain on the heart. According to the severity, the doctor will prescribe you medications.

Surgeries

When the symptoms do not improve the doctor will suggest you to go through some surgeries such as -

IV medications

To boost the heart's ability to pump fast, medications are administered through an IV.

Ventilator assist device (VAD)

It assists in the pumping of blood from the heart's lower chambers (ventricles) to the rest of the body. It's a treatment for a weakening or failing heart.

Intra-aortic balloon pump

It is a device that pumps air into the aorta. This device improves blood flow and relieves stress on the heart. A tiny tube (catheter) is inserted into a blood artery in the leg and guided to the heart by a cardiologist. In the main artery flowing out of the body, a balloon linked to the end of the catheter inflates and deflates.

ECMO

An ECMO machine functions similarly to the lungs. It eliminates carbon dioxide from the blood and replaces it with oxygen. This can deliver oxygen to the body if you have serious heart failure. ECMO involves removing blood from the body, passing it through a machine, and then returning it to the body.

Heart transplant

In patients with severe myocarditis, an immediate heart transplant may be required.


Lifestyle changes and self-care

In order to treat and recover from myocarditis, it is critical to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Consider implementing the following heart-healthy strategies to manage and prevent Myocarditis -

  • Do a physical exercise that is safe for you.
  • Avoid certain sports activities for at least 3 to 6 months when you are diagnosed with myocarditis.
  • Limit your salt intake.
  • Alcohol should be avoided.
  • Do not do smoking.
  • Take proper sleep of 7 to 8 hours.
  • Eat healthy food.
  • Avoid oily, fried, fast foods.

Do’s and Don’ts

Do’s Don’ts
Eat a healthy balanced diet. Eat fried, oily pr outside food.
Take your medications timely. Wait for your symptoms to get worse.
Limit your intake of salt in the food. Eat foods that are not good for your heart.
Wash your hands very frequently. Come in close contact with a person who has flu or cold.
Take your vaccinations. Forget to seek regular doctor consultation.

Many people who have myocarditis can fully recover from the complications and future health risks. Follow the above do’s and don’ts to manage this condition.


Myocarditis Care at Medicover

At Medicover Hospitals, we have the most trusted team of Cardiology doctors and medical experts who are experienced in providing excellent healthcare services to the patients with compassion and care. Our diagnostic department is equipped with modern technology and equipment for the accurate diagnosis of Myocarditis based on which a dedicated treatment plan is designed. We have an excellent team of Cardiologists and Cardiac surgeons who treat this condition with utmost precision and provide comprehensive care to the patients.


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