Conversation with a Harvard doctor: Talking about heart failure
Dr. Lynne Warner Stevenson is a Harvard Medical School professor and director of the heart failure program within the Advanced Heart Disease Section at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
Heart failure — that's such a scary term.
Heart failure, unfortunately, creates this vision in people's minds of the heart just stopping. A better term might be a handicapped heart, which either doesn't pump very well or doesn't receive blood well.
It's also important to understand that there are two types of heart failure. I sometimes explain it as weak-heart heart failure and stiff-heart heart failure.