Fatty Degeneration


Categories: Uncategorized
Sources: Disturbances Of The Heart

Fatty degeneration of the heart muscle may be caused by acute

poisoning (as phosphorus, arsenic, etc.), by serious infections, or

it may follow fibrosis of the heart or coronary artery disease. The

symptoms are those of serious circulatory weaicnens, which does not

seem to improve under any ordinary management. It is difficult, if

the heart is enlarged, to determine whether there is more or less

serious acute dilatation or whether the heart muscle has suffered

fatty degenration.



The treatment of such a patient requires the best of judgment as to

the amount of food and liquid that should be given, the regulation

of the administration of laxatives, the sponging of the body, the

means of producing sleep if there is insomnia, how much reading,

conversation or amusements should be allowed, how much stimulation

by stryclmin or other stimulating drug should be given, and whether

or not very small doses of digitalis should he tried. These are all

matters for individualizing, and for the best medical judgment which

we are called on to give. How much repair can take place in a heart

muscle when fatty degeneration has started we do not know. Such

treatment will give the heart the only chance it has to recuperate,

but the prognosis is bad.





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