Other Related Conditions

What other conditions can occur as a result of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?

In some people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a number of other conditions can develop as a result of having the condition. These may include the following:

Arrhythmias

The abnormality of the heart muscle in people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy can sometimes interfere with the normal electrical activity of the heart. In the affected parts of the heart muscle, the electrical impulse may become disrupted as it crosses the areas of disarrayed cells and scarring. This can lead to fast or erratic heart rhythms known as arrhythmias. Arrhythmias are a common complication in people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The two most common arrhythmias in people with this condition are atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia. In atrial fibrillation, the atria (the two upper chambers of the heart) beat irregularly and very fast. This can lead to feelings of palpitations or fluttering in the chest. The condition can usually be controlled with medication.

Ventricular tachycardias

Ventricular tachycardias are arrhythmias that affect the ventricles – the lower pumping chambers of the heart. The ventricles take over the heartbeat independently of the SA node, leading to a rapid heartbeat. Ventricular tachycardias can be controlled with medication, but they can sometimes lead to more life-threatening arrhythmias, and the risk of sudden death.

Heart block

A small number of people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy may get heart block. This is when the electrical impulse travels down to the ventricles slowly, or may even be completely blocked. This affects the way that the heart contracts.

Endocarditis

This is an infection of the endocardium, the lining of the heart. It is a rare but serious condition, but it can be treated.