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Monday, July 2, 2018

Heart Failure: When Can It Lead To Death?

Heart failure, if untreated, can lead to death because other organs of the body will not be receiving enough oxygen. Usually, one of the first organs to be affected are the kidneys.

The kidneys will fail and lose their ability to excrete salts and water, and actually, cause your body to retain more fluid. Actually, kidney failure alone can lead to pulmonary edema, or exacerbate it.

Likewise, fluid will back up in the liver, which in turn will fail in its job of removing toxins from the body. Lacking oxygen, the large and small intestines will lose their ability to absorb nutrients, and thus one organ after another will fail, ultimately leading to death.

Of course, our job as healthcare workers is to prevent this. Well, it's the doctor's job actually. We as RTs usually only treat heart failure after symptoms arise.

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