The Symptoms of Hypertrophy Or Overgrowth Of The Heart

Heavy beating of the heart; visible pulsation of the arteries; ringing iin the ears; spots before the eyes; dizziness; in severe cases, apoplexy.

This is a disease which may exist for many years without its presence being manifest by symptoms sufficiently severe to attract attention.

The Causes of Hypertrophy Or Overgrowth Of The Heart

The most common cause is disease of the valves of the heart, which interferes with the passage of the blood through its cavities into the arteries. It also occurs very frequently in persons addicted to the use of stimulants. The use of alcoholic liquors and tobacco are particularly productive of this affection.

The Treatment of Hypertrophy Or Overgrowth Of The Heart

The treatment of the disease consists in an abstemious diet, excluding all alcoholic drinks, condiments, excess of animal food, tea, coffee, tobacco, and stimulants of all kinds; overeating, and the use of hot drinks, or excessive drinks of any kind must also be avoided. In Germany, where it is frequently the result of high living and the use of beer, the "whey cure" and "grape cure" are particularly noted as effective means of treating this affection.

In the first of these methods, the patient is made to subsist almost wholly upon the use of the whey of milk. The grape cure consists in confining the patient to the use of grapes almost exclusively. He is allowed to take from three to six or eight pounds of grapes each day. The water cure, even as practiced in the old-fashioned water-cures of Germany, is also advantageous. The essentials of treatment, in addition to careful dietetic measures, are the wet-sheet pock and warm full bath, repeated as often as the patient will bear, without much reduction of flesh or strength. If there is a great degree of plethora, the patient being full-blooded, with excessive redness of cheeks and Ups, such measures as the pack, full bath, and wet-hand rub, may be repeated daily for several weeks without detriment. Another excellent measure, suggested by Prof. Niemyer, is wearing constantly over the region of the heart a small bag filled with iced water. Frequent changes of the water would of course be required in order to continue the efficiency of the remedy. In cases in which enlargement is due to disease of the valves of the heart, the evils above described do not occur, and treatment for the affection is not required, as the enlargement is rendered necessary by the unusual obstacles which the heart has to overcome in its action.