About 1 in 500 people are affected by Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), in which the walls of a heart chamber are too thick.
HCM increases the risk of sudden cardiac death, especially in people under 30.
HCM reduces the heart's ability to do its job.
Symptoms are common and diagnosis can be challenging.
The most common symptoms occur during exertion.
HCM is often caused by a complex genetic mutation that can be inherited. Diagnosed individuals may consider genetic testing to assess risk to family members.
2/3 of patients find symptoms are relieved with medication. The remaining 1/3 need additional treatment and lifestyle changes.
HCM may result in severe arrhythmia (a heartbeat that's out of rhythm), increasing the risk of sudden death. A defibrillator may be implanted to regulate the heartbeat using electrical impulses.
The preferred option of most patients who have not improved with medication, septal myectomy delivers significant and long-lasting relief for 90-95% of patients.
In this open-heart procedure, a portion of the thickened heart wall is surgically removed to improve blood flow.
A minimally invasive alternative, septal ablation may be better suited for patients who can't undergo open-heart surgery due to age or other risk factor.
In this transcather procedure, a small portion of the thickened heart wall is intentionally scarred using a long thin tube.
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