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Amyloid Heart Disease, also known as cardiac amyloidosis is a disorder caused by deposits of an abnormal protein in the heart tissue. These deposits make it hard for the heart to work properly.

Causes

Over time, the amyloid proteins replace normal tissue, leading to failure of the involved organ. There are many forms of amyloidosis.

Amyloid heart disease occurs when amyloid deposits take the place of normal heart muscle. It is the most typical type of restrictive cardiomyopathy. Amyloid heart disease may affect the way electrical signals move through the heart. This can lead to abnormal heartbeats and faulty heart signals, known as heart block.

When the condition is inherited, it is called familial cardiac amyloidosis. It can also develop as the result of another disease, such as a type of bone and blood cancer, or as the result of another medical problem causing inflammation. Amyloid heart disease is more common in men than in women. The disease is rare in people under age 40.

Symptoms

Some people may have no symptoms. When present, symptoms may include:

  • Excessive urination at night
  • Fatigue, reduced exercise ability
  • Palpitations
  • Shortness of breath with activity
  • Swelling of the abdomen, legs, ankles or other part of the body
  • Trouble breathing while lying down

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