Heart Failure Health Information

Do you know the symptoms of heart failure?

F - A - C - E - S

  • Fatigue 
  • Activities limited 
  • Chest congestion 
  • Edema or ankle swelling 
  • Shortness of breath


Symptoms of heart failure can start slowly. At first, they may only occur when you are very active. Over time, you may notice breathing problems and other symptoms, even when you are resting.

Symptoms may also appear suddenly after your heart is damaged from a heart attack or other heart condition.

Common symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • Fatigue, weakness or faintness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pulse that feels too fast or irregular
  • Shortness of breath when you are active or after you lie down
  • Swelling of the abdomen
  • Swollen feet and ankles
  • Waking up from sleep after a couple of hours due to shortness of breath
  • Weight gain

Risk factors

If you have any of the following conditions, you may be at a greater risk for heart failure:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Enlarged heart or a family history of enlarged heart
  • History of heart murmurs
  • Prior heart attack

More information

If you have any of these symptoms, please contact your doctor or make an appointment with the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute at 503-494-1775.

Make an appointment

Ask the heart and vascular experts