Acute coronary syndrome occurs when there isn't enough blood flowing through your heart. It can be felt as chest pain (angina) or a heart attack.
Angina is a common type of chest pain caused by coronary artery disease. Unstable angina can be a warning sign of a heart attack.
Find out what's behind this life-threatening eating disorder and how to treat it.
In aortic valve regurgitation, the aortic valve doesn't close tightly, causing blood to leak back into your heart.
In aortic valve stenosis, the aortic valve narrows, blocking blood flow. The aortic valve connects your heart to the aorta, your body's main artery.
Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is a sudden and serious lung failure that develops in people who are critically ill or have major injuries.
Atrial septal defect (ASD) is an abnormal opening between the heart's upper pumping chambers. It's common and readily treated.
Broken heart syndrome, also called stress cardiomyopathy, mimics a heart attack. Discover how stress could trigger this puzzling condition.
Bulimia often leads to a secret life of shame. Find out what's behind this life-threatening disease and how to treat it.
Bundle branch block is a disorder that affects the electrical impulses traveling to your heart. It may be a sign of underlying heart disease.
Cardiogenic shock is a life-threatening complication usually of a heart attack. Cardiogenic shock treatments can be effective, but must be provided immediately.
Cardiomyopathy is a heart muscle disease. Treatment options depend on what type of cardiomyopathy you have.
Chest pain can be frightening, but it doesn't always indicate a heart attack.
Coarctation of the aorta is a cardiovascular defect resulting in a narrowing of the aorta, the blood vessel that delivers oxygen-rich blood to your body.
Diabetic ketoacidosis is a serious diabetes complication. Learn the warning signs — and know when to seek emergency care.
Dilated cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart in which the heart's main pumping chamber becomes enlarged and doesn't pump blood efficiently.
Dressler's syndrome is a complication of a heart attack, heart surgery or other traumatic injury to the heart.
Ebstein's anomaly is a rare heart defect. Some people may not have any symptoms, but others may need treatment, including surgery.
Eisenmenger syndrome, a complication of congenital heart defects, can be life-threatening if not properly treated. Find out more.
Enlarged heart is often a sign of a serious heart condition. Find out causes and treatments for enlarged heart.
A heart arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm. Arrhythmias can be a byproduct of damage to the heart from disease or age.
Heart disease, usually thought of as blockages in the arteries that can cause a heart attack, can describe any medical condition affecting your heart.
Heart failure means your heart can't efficiently pump blood throughout your body. Medications, and sometimes devices or surgery, can help you manage this condition.
This whooshing sound in your heart is usually harmless, but in some cases heart murmurs can alert your doctor to specific heart conditions.
Heart palpitations are skipped, fluttering or racing heartbeats that aren't usually a symptom of a serious heart problem. Discover the causes and symptoms of this condition.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetic disorder in which heart muscle becomes abnormally thick. It's the most common cause of sudden cardiac death in young people.
Kawasaki disease — the leading cause of acquired coronary disease in children — causes artery wall inflammation throughout the body. It affects children younger than age 5.
Left ventricular hypertrophy, thickening of the wall of your heart's main pumping chamber, increases your risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Long QT syndrome is an electrical disturbance that can cause sudden, rapid heart rates. It can be genetic or a side effect of medication.
Low blood pressure (hypotension) can be a sign of good health or of a life-threatening condition. Find out more about hypotension's causes and treatment options.
Mitral valve prolapse occurs when the valve separating two of your heart's chambers malfunctions. The disorder usually isn't serious and often doesn't require surgical treatment.
Mitral valve regurgitation occurs when blood flows backward in your heart because the mitral valve closes improperly.
In mitral valve stenosis, the mitral valve is narrowed, obstructing blood flow between the chambers on the left side of the heart.
Myocardial ischemia is a heart problem that occurs when blood flow to your heart muscle is decreased, reducing the heart's oxygen supply.
Myocarditis is a disease in which the heart muscle becomes inflamed and swollen, often as the result of an infection.
Noonan syndrome is caused by a mutation in one of the genes responsible for normal development in many parts of the body, including the heart.
Orthostatic hypotension (postural hypotension) is a form of low blood pressure that occurs when you stand up.
Panic attacks can make you feel like you're having a heart attack. Learn how to manage these intense bursts of fear.
Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is a persistent, abnormal opening between the aorta and pulmonary artery. If it doesn't resolve on its own, it's readily treated.
Pericardial effusion, the accumulation of excess fluid in the sac-like structure around the heart, can decrease heart function and can be life-threatening.
Pulmonary atresia is a heart defect that you're born with. Fortunately, treatment soon after birth and ongoing throughout childhood and adulthood greatly improve your prognosis.
Pulmonary valve stenosis is a narrowing of the valve that controls blood flow from your heart to your lungs. It's usually present at birth.
Rheumatic fever, an inflammatory disease triggered by untreated or poorly treated strep throat, can cause permanent heart damage.
Secondary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that's caused by another medical condition. Prompt treatment is often necessary to avoid complications.
Sudden cardiac arrest is a medical emergency. Rapid treatment improves your chances of survival.
Tachycardia, a rapid heart rate, is caused by an abnormality in your heart's electrical impulses. Tachycardia can cause serious complications, including sudden cardiac arrest.
Tetralogy of Fallot, a cause of "blue baby" syndrome, is a congenital heart condition resulting in oxygen-poor blood leaving the heart and entering the body.
Transposition of the great arteries is a congenital heart defect in which the placement of the aorta and the pulmonary artery is switched.
Tuberous sclerosis is a rare genetic disease. With appropriate treatment, many people who have tuberous sclerosis lead full, productive lives.
Vasovagal syncope (fainting) is a sudden and brief loss of consciousness that occurs when the blood flow to your brain is markedly reduced.
Ventricular fibrillation is a life-threatening heart rhythm disturbance that requires immediate treatment. Find out more.
A ventricular septal defect (VSD) is an abnormal opening between the heart's lower chambers. Untreated, this congenital defect may cause heart failure and pulmonary hypertension.
An abnormal electrical pathway in the heart causes the rapid heart rate of Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome.
Oct. 24, 2012
- Electrocardiogram. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ekg/. Accessed Aug. 20, 2012.
- Podrid PJ. Ambulatory monitoring in the assessment of cardiac arrhythmias. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Aug. 20, 2012.
- Stress testing. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/stress/. Accessed Aug. 20, 2012.