Myocarditis is inflammation of the middle layer of the heart wall and is most commonly caused by a viral infection; however, bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infections can trigger this condition, as well. Other precipitating factors for myocarditis are allergic reactions, prescription medications, street drugs, and chemotherapy, just to name few.
Myocarditis – if it becomes severe – can lead to heart attack or stroke because the pumping action of the heart becomes weaker and cannot supply your body with the blood it needs to function properly. Severe myocarditis can also lead to sudden death.
Although thousands of individuals are diagnosed with this condition each year, the exact numbers of people afflicted with it are unknown because myocarditis often goes unnoticed or undiagnosed. In fact, it is frequently asymptomatic.
According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Prevention and Control), influenza activity is currently low. However, once influenza season gets in full swing, myocarditis can become a complication of the flu infection. That’s why it’s a good idea to become aware of these symptoms and schedule a check-up with your medical care provider if you exhibit any of them.
• Abnormal heartbeat
• Shortness of breath
• Leg swelling
• Fluid in the lungs
• Shortness of breath, especially during exercise
• Shortness of breath while lying down, especially after a work-out
• Stabbing chest pain
• Feeling light-headed
• Inflammation/swelling in the neck veins, legs, and/or joints
• Painful joints
• Muscle aches
Because myocarditis is most often caused by infections, it’s a good idea to ensure that you are current with your immunizations, particularly rubella and influenza. Additionally, you’ll want to limit your exposure to ticks because tick-borne diseases can also trigger this disease.
There are a variety of diagnostic tests your physician may use to determine if you have developed myocarditis. Furthermore, if you have been diagnosed with it, there are some measures you can take to lessen the severity of your symptoms. There is no one-size-fits all treatment, however; your physician will determine the best course of medical intervention to take for your myocarditis, depending on the cause of it.
While your physician will most likely prescribe medications and lifestyle changes, there are steps you can take to complement your prescribed treatment plan.
If you smoke, quit. Individuals who smoke increase their chances of myocardial infarction and sudden death.
Limit alcohol consumption. The general rule of thumb is that women should drink no more than one drink a day; men should consume no more than two drinks a day. A drink is equivalent to 1.5 ounces of liquor, 5 ounces of wine, or 12 ounces of beer.
Adopt a heart healthy diet. You’ll want to limit your consumption of saturated and trans fats. You may, however, enjoy foods that contain “good” fats, such as soybean oils, canola, walnuts, and salmon. A fiber-rich diet that is high in fruits and vegetables is also recommended to protect your heart.
The MAP can identify underlying issues that may contribute to myocarditis and recommend nutritional supplements and other lifestyle changes to ease symptoms and prevent future flare ups. The MAP uses a saliva and urine test to determine the root cause of symptoms and then provides a series of recommendations using natural home remedies to help you live a heart healthy life.
If you’d like to learn more about The MAP and arrange for your own personal diagnostic evaluation, enter your first name and email address in the field on the right-hand side of this page. We’ll register you to attend our next webinar and show you how The MAP can help you boost your energy, lessen the pain of chronic symptoms, and enhance your overall quality of life.