CARDIAC MUSCLE DISEASE
Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy (ACM) is a genetic heart muscle disease in which parts of the heart muscle are replaced by fat or scar tissue. Heart muscle cells are connected to each other by specific proteins: if these connections pull apart quickly, heart muscle cells start to die and are replaced by fat and fibrous scar tissue.
The disease ACM is also called ARVC (Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy) or ARVD (- Dysplasia), which usually affects the right ventricle, but in some cases also the left one.
adults has signs of ACM
Possible signs and symptoms of ACM are:
Shortness of breath, problems by exercise and reduced endurance
Cardiac arrhythmia: severe arrhythmia can sometimes cause dizziness, fainting and even sudden cardiac death
In the course of life
The changes of the heart muscle can develop slowly over the course of life, usually in adulthood but sometimes from the age of 10 years. The symptoms vary from gene carrier to gene carrier: some may experience severe heart problems (and eventually heart failure) while others have no symptoms at all. In case of symptoms, it is important to discuss it with your GP so that additional cardiovascular examination can be carried out.
ACCORDING TO SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
Depending on symptoms, adequate medication can be prescribed.
ICD / Pacemaker
If there is a risk of dangerous cardiac arrhythmia, an ICD can be implemented.
If necessary, a VAD can be implemented and/or heart transplant can be done.
Patients with ACM should avoid intensive exercise and endurance sports.
An ultrasound of the heart provides a clear image and sound of the function and shape of the heart muscle and valves.
The MRI examination, which generates radio wave (magnetic) signals, provides a clear picture of the heart (chambers).
In an electrocardiogram, the electrical signals of the heartbeats are properly recorded and can be analyzed.
• Cardiovascular examination may also include a Holter monitor test and/or an exercise test/cycle test.
Discuss it with your GP or cardiologist
If you’re experiencing some signs and symptoms, or if other family members have been found to have a predisposition for the genetic heart disease ACM, please discuss it with your GP/cardiologist so that additional cardiovascular examination can be assessed.