Virtual heart reveals new clues to heart failure

Scientists have produced a detailed computer model of a heart that shows the electrophysiology of congestive heart failure, according to a study published in PLOS Computational Biology. Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a leading cause of death in the United States. 

 According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 5.7 million Americans have heart failure. About half of the people who are diagnosed with this condition die within 5 years of diagnosis.  Heart failure does not mean that the heart has stopped, or will stop, completely. It refers to a condition in which the heart is not able to pump enough blood for the body to function properly.  As a result of heart failure, fluid and blood can back up into the lungs, the person may experience tiredness, breathlessness, and edema, or a buildup of fluid in the legs, ankles, and feet.

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