Last Updated on Aug 27, 2016


Cardiomyopathy involves a weakening of the heart muscles or structural changes in these muscles. This often leads to inadequate heart pumping or problems with the functioning of the heart.

The poor heart pumping mechanism leads to accumulation of fluid in the lungs, liver, and other body systems. Cardiomyopathy is classified into three morphologic types: dilated, restrictive, and hypertrophic. When the exact cause is not known the term used is idiopathic.

  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy: In this condition the heart muscles get thicker making it harder for blood to leave.
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Weakening and enlargement of the heart muscles prevent it from pumping blood efficiently.
  • Restrictive Cardiomyopathy: This condition is associated with increased stiffness of the heart.

Symptoms include palpitation. difficulty with breathing (dyspnoea) and sometimes even Sudden death can occur, Complications like pulmonary oedema, arrhythmias and ascites can occur.

Sudden cardiac death is the most dreaded of the complications. International guidelines recommend that a risk stratification score can predict the outcome. These are the six risk factors to look for in a patient with Cardiomyopathy:

  • Previous cardiac arrest or sustained ventricular tachycardia,
  • Non-sustained ventricular tachycardia,
  • Extreme left ventricular hypertrophy,
  • Unexplained syncope,
  • Abnormal blood pressure response,
  • Family history of sudden death

Diagnosis is generally established by chest X-ray and two-dimensional echocardiography. In case the echocardiogramis of poor quality then the alternatives Gadolinium cardiovascular magnetic resonance magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT).

Treatment and outlook of Cardiomyopathy depends on a number of factors like cause & type of Cardiomyopathy. Heart transplant is a treatment option for selected patients with hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM).


  1. Cecil Medicine, 23rd Ed.
  3. Garlic Oil may Protect Against Cardiomyopathy in Diabetes Patients - (
  4. Link between enteroviruses and dilated cardiomyopathy: serological and molecular data - (

Latest Publications and Research on Cardiomyopathy


vaishali9524 Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Which age group people are more affected by Cardiomyopathy?

hollande2312bay Tuesday, February 8, 2011

This actually has some good information, but it is poorly written with many spelling/grammar mistakes, and it makes me wonder who on earth wrote this? Therefore, I don't trust this information; it looks very unprofessional.

Most Popular on Medindia