Harvard Heart Letter

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: Who has an inherited risk?

 A family history of heart disease, especially when it shows up at a young age, is a warning sign that a strong genetic component is at play. Common heart conditions such as high blood pressure and coronary artery disease most likely result from mild changes in a wide variety of genes combined with lifestyle and environmental factors. However, a few rare diseases are caused by changes with powerful effects in a few key genes. The most common of these is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Now, doctors can use genetic testing to help guide individuals and families at risk for this condition.
To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »