Nutrition therapy in patients with acute heart failure syndrome (AHFS) is rarely acknowledged medically or cardiologically as being important for either a patient's quality of life or survival prognosis. We cannot correlate nutrition with AHFS due to several factors: (1) it is unclear whether or not even a short-term (days/week) underfeeding/starvation has a negative impact on cardiac function (1); (2) we underestimate nutrition as a factor that may contribute to the clinical decline of patients; and (3) the difficulty of isolating the role that nutrition status plays a in patient's prognosis, independent of associated disease(s). Given the wide spectrum of clinical features that usually characterize AHFS patients, a great deal of experience is required of physicians to provide patients with individually tailored nutrition therapies. This chapter discusses the pathophysiologic alterations induced by undernutrition, the possible beneficial effects that may result from the prescription of an appropriate nutrition therapy, and the impact of nutrition on AHFS patients with chronic heart failure (CHF) secondary to ischemic, valvular, hypertensive, or idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathies admitted to general medical and cardiac wards.
ASJC Scopus subject areas