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Breathlessness is a common problem in people with heart failure. A study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology showed that leg exercises might reduce the symptom for adults who worked out three times a week. Each session included 15 minutes on a bicycle, then 15 minutes on a treadmill. They also did leg exercises with 5 to 9 pound weights. The exercisers had stronger
legs three months later. They also reported less breathlessness and a better quality of life.
For most people, beginning a light, low-intensity workout program is safe. However, if you are new to exercising, have been inactive for an extended period of time, have any medical issues or are looking to start an intense exercise program, you should speak to your doctor frst.
Leg Exercises May Help You Breathe Easier
Know the Risks of Your Heart Medicines
Heart medicines are meant to help you. But it’s wise to watch for side efects you might have from your prescriptions. Some to watch for:
●● Prescription anticlotting medicines can help prevent heart attacks. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefts.
●● ACE inhibitors treat high blood pressure. Be aware that some blood pressure medication may cause dizziness.
Tell your doctor about possible side efects from your medicine. But don’t stop taking a medication without your doctor’s OK.
If you have other health conditions in addition to heart failure, it’s likely that you will need to take a combination of medications. So it pays to be aware of which
combinations can cause a dangerous mix. Discuss other health conditions and the medications you take with your doctor to prevent problems.
It’s always a good idea to read the labels on your medicine. Also, use one pharmacy for all your prescriptions. These steps can also help you avoid dangerous interactions.
Take Caution with
The Journal of the American Medical Association reported that half of all potential medication interactions involve over-the-counter medicine. Some that can afect medication for heart conditions include:
●● Saint-John’s wort
●● Vitamin E
Even combining two over-the-counter medicines can lead to problems. Ginkgo biloba and aspirin taken together can increase the risk of bleeding.
Prevent interactions by letting your doctor know all the medicines – prescription and over-the-counter – that you take.
Got a question about a medication? The Drug Search at hap.org has details on more than 200 diferent heart medications.