Symptoms of Heart Failure

Awareness of heart failure symptoms is dangerously low1.

Keeping track

You are probably aware of the most common symptoms of heart failure, such as shortness of breath or tiredness, but it is important to be aware of all of the symptoms so that you can keep track of the with your doctor.

The types of symptoms and severity of these can be related to numerous factors such as other underlying illnesses.

For this reason, it is always important to keep a close eye on your symptoms and any changes to them.

Symptoms can include2,3:

Shortness of breath – this can occur even when not doing strenuous activities and may even be worse when lying down

Swollen ankles, legs, or abdomen – caused by a build-up of fluid
Tiredness or fatigue – feeling tired most of the time and finding exercise and physical activities exhausting

Other, less common symptoms may include2,3:
Rapid or irregular heart rate
Lack of appetite and nausea
Persistent coughing or wheezing
Difficulty concentrating or confusion

Worsening symptoms

As people living with heart failure get older, their symptoms may change. Sometimes symptoms become more severe, having a larger impact on their day-to-day life. Always track your symptoms and their development and note any changes with your healthcare team. This may impact whether you need to change your management plan.

Keep track of your heart failure symptoms

Track your symptoms


  1. AstraZeneca PLP. Data on File. ID: REF – 74964. March 2020
  2. NHS. Symptoms of heart failure. Available online at: Last accessed August 25 2020
  3. Mayo Clinic. Symptoms of Heart Failure. Available online at: syc-20373142. Last accessed August 25 2020
11 February 2021

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