Understanding Heart Murmurs: 4 Important FAQs Answered

The heart murmur can be felt like a soft swishing or clicking noise inside your body that’s different from the rhythmic beating of a healthy heart. If you think that you have a heart murmur, your health care provider can listen to your heart using a stethoscope to see why your heart is reacting this way.

A heart murmur can appear to be a simple physical condition, but it also can be considered as a normal or abnormal physiological condition depending on the person.

Understanding a heart murmur

Getting the right information about this condition will prepare you in dealing with it properly if you or a loved one experiences it. In this article, we will answer four frequently asked questions about heart murmurs to give you more insight into the condition:

1. “What is the cause of heart murmurs?”

The most common cause of heart murmurs is abnormal blood flow through the heart. When a heart valve isn’t working correctly, you’ll start hearing and feeling a different rhythmic beat that a normal heart would do. Know that they can be classified as abnormal or innocent conditions.

Innocent heart murmurs require no medical attention as it comes from common illnesses, such as fever, hyperthyroidism, and anemia, which do not require urgent medical attention. Conditions of this caliber can affect people of all ages. They come and go and are relatively harmless. Sometimes, you can have this sickness without even realizing it.

Abnormal heart murmur, on the other hand, is also known as a pathological murmur. This is known to be related to various conditions, such as heart valve defects, congenital heart defects, and infections that cause narrowing in the aorta. Immediate medical attention is typically recommended to assess the severity of the condition.

2. “What are the symptoms of a heart murmur?”

Though some people experience heart murmurs with no symptoms, others can experience more difficulties, whether they’re innocent or abnormal. The symptoms are as follows:

  • Recurring chest pain
  • A feeling of dizziness or fainting
  • Excessive sweating and shortness of breath
  • Bluish skin color, commonly found on lips and fingers
  • Swelling in the abdomen, legs, and feet
  • Poor eating paired with weight gain

If you see yourself experiencing two or more of these symptoms together with the odd rhythmic heartbeats, it’s recommended that you see a health care provider to diagnose your condition.

3. “How am I diagnosed for a heart murmur?”

After meeting with your healthcare provider, you’ll be asked to dictate the symptoms that you’re feeling together by answering if your family has a history of heart disease. Your physician will then consider how your heart responds in different positions of your body from standing to squatting.

To get a better assessment of your heart’s condition, you’ll most likely be sent to a cardiologist for several tests, such as a chest X-Ray, echocardiogram, and cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

4. “How am I treated for heart murmur?”

Innocent murmurs need no specific medical treatment as they will resolve on their own. On the other hand, if they are due to abnormal blood flow in your heart’s chambers or valve problems, you need to be periodically monitored with tests and check-ups to see how your heart improves over time.

Treatment for this condition might require surgical correction as soon as they’re diagnosed with abnormal conditions. However, some patients may take a longer time to assess whether or not they’re due for an invasive procedure.

Conclusion

Although heart murmurs are generally harmful, it’s best to know what to do if you start feeling irregular heartbeats to determine whether or not you require immediate medical attention. Knowing about a condition is the first step in better preparing yourself to deal with it if ever you face it in the future.

If you require a primary care physician in NJ, we at Garden State Medical Group can help in finding the perfect physician for you. Get in touch with us today!

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