HEART FAILURE CLINIQUE
Understanding Heart Failure Clinic (HFC)
Heart failure requires regular health follow-ups, which are in fact regular medical monitoring in an external clinic.
The frequency of these follow-ups varies according to the evolution of your symptoms and the progression of the disease.
Follow-up appointments may occur as often as weekly. Their frequency is determined by a member of the clinical team.
This type of clinic usually schedules appointments.
The date and time of your first appointment at the clinic are communicated to you by phone or mail.
Normally, your next appointment is scheduled before leaving the clinic.
It may happen that an appointment is given in a short delay because of deterioration of symptoms or at the request of the staff of the clinic.
Relevant information is needed to help healthcare professionals optimize your treatment. For example :
- an up-to-date list of your medications, including recent changes,
- the name and contact information (including fax number) of your family doctor and / or other medical specialists on your file,
- the name and contact information (including fax number) of your pharmacy,
- the values of the blood pressure measured at home,
- the list of your daily weight,
- the amount of liquid consumed each day,
- recent changes in your usual symptoms,
- any hospitalization or recent visit to the emergency room,
- questions to ask the team.
Other important information
It is very important to notify the clinic of any change of address and / or telephone number (s).
You must contact the clinic between your appointments:
- if you are more out of breath than usual,
- if there is swelling of the legs or belly,
- if you wake up breathless in the middle of the night,
- if you notice a weight gain of 1-2 kg in 3-5 days,
- if your symptoms deteriorate,
- and according to any other directive received from the care team.
What goes on at an appointment?
The first appointment allows for the team to be informed of your medical history as well as to check certain risk factors such as smoking, sleep apnea, diabetes, cholesterol, etc.
During your subsequent visits, you will have routine blood tests and several questions will be asked about your symptoms to assess the stability or instability of your condition.
Also, the health professional will perform a physical examination that includes:
- blood pressure,
- Heart rate,
- the oxygen saturation,
- the weight,
- pulmonary auscultation,
- cardiac auscultation,
- the examination of the veins of the neck.
At this point, it is possible that other tests are requested.
Your medications may also change to strengthen your heart, make your work easier, improve your quality of life, prevent hospitalizations and / or prolong your life, even if your condition seems stable.
Collaboration with your family doctor and / or other specialists
A copy of the clinical follow-up notes for heart failure may be sent to other health professionals who are treating you.