Heart Failure: A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION.Heart: The hollow, muscular organ that maintains the circulation of the blood.Heart Rate: The number of times the HEART VENTRICLES contract per unit of time, usually per minute.Cardiac Output, Low: A state of subnormal or depressed cardiac output at rest or during stress. It is a characteristic of CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES, including congenital, valvular, rheumatic, hypertensive, coronary, and cardiomyopathic. The serious form of low cardiac output is characterized by marked reduction in STROKE VOLUME, and systemic vasoconstriction resulting in cold, pale, and sometimes cyanotic extremities.Heart Failure, Systolic: Heart failure caused by abnormal myocardial contraction during SYSTOLE leading to defective cardiac emptying.Heart Failure, Diastolic: Heart failure caused by abnormal myocardial relaxation during DIASTOLE leading to defective cardiac filling.Stroke Volume: The amount of BLOOD pumped out of the HEART per beat, not to be confused with cardiac output (volume/time). It is calculated as the difference between the end-diastolic volume and the end-systolic volume.Myocardium: The muscle tissue of the HEART. It is composed of striated, involuntary muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC) connected to form the contractile pump to generate blood flow.Heart Diseases: Pathological conditions involving the HEART including its structural and functional abnormalities.Heart Transplantation: The transference of a heart from one human or animal to another.Cardiomyopathy, Dilated: A form of CARDIAC MUSCLE disease that is characterized by ventricular dilation, VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION, and HEART FAILURE. Risk factors include SMOKING; ALCOHOL DRINKING; HYPERTENSION; INFECTION; PREGNANCY; and mutations in the LMNA gene encoding LAMIN TYPE A, a NUCLEAR LAMINA protein.Natriuretic Peptide, Brain: A PEPTIDE that is secreted by the BRAIN and the HEART ATRIA, stored mainly in cardiac ventricular MYOCARDIUM. It can cause NATRIURESIS; DIURESIS; VASODILATION; and inhibits secretion of RENIN and ALDOSTERONE. It improves heart function. It contains 32 AMINO ACIDS.Ventricular Function, Left: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the left HEART VENTRICLE. Its measurement is an important aspect of the clinical evaluation of patients with heart disease to determine the effects of the disease on cardiac performance.Ventricular Dysfunction, Left: A condition in which the LEFT VENTRICLE of the heart was functionally impaired. This condition usually leads to HEART FAILURE; MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION; and other cardiovascular complications. Diagnosis is made by measuring the diminished ejection fraction and a depressed level of motility of the left ventricular wall.Hemodynamics: The movement and the forces involved in the movement of the blood through the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM.Treatment Failure: A measure of the quality of health care by assessment of unsuccessful results of management and procedures used in combating disease, in individual cases or series.Chronic Disease: Diseases which have one or more of the following characteristics: they are permanent, leave residual disability, are caused by nonreversible pathological alteration, require special training of the patient for rehabilitation, or may be expected to require a long period of supervision, observation, or care. (Dictionary of Health Services Management, 2d ed)Adrenergic beta-Antagonists: Drugs that bind to but do not activate beta-adrenergic receptors thereby blocking the actions of beta-adrenergic agonists. Adrenergic beta-antagonists are used for treatment of hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, angina pectoris, glaucoma, migraine headaches, and anxiety.Ventricular Remodeling: The geometric and structural changes that the HEART VENTRICLES undergo, usually following MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION. It comprises expansion of the infarct and dilatation of the healthy ventricle segments. While most prevalent in the left ventricle, it can also occur in the right ventricle.Heart Defects, Congenital: Developmental abnormalities involving structures of the heart. These defects are present at birth but may be discovered later in life.Treatment Outcome: Evaluation undertaken to assess the results or consequences of management and procedures used in combating disease in order to determine the efficacy, effectiveness, safety, and practicability of these interventions in individual cases or series.Echocardiography: Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic.Cardiotonic Agents: Agents that have a strengthening effect on the heart or that can increase cardiac output. They may be CARDIAC GLYCOSIDES; SYMPATHOMIMETICS; or other drugs. They are used after MYOCARDIAL INFARCT; CARDIAC SURGICAL PROCEDURES; in SHOCK; or in congestive heart failure (HEART FAILURE).Myocardial Contraction: Contractile activity of the MYOCARDIUM.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Cardiac Pacing, Artificial: Regulation of the rate of contraction of the heart muscles by an artificial pacemaker.Heart Function Tests: Examinations used to diagnose and treat heart conditions.Follow-Up Studies: Studies in which individuals or populations are followed to assess the outcome of exposures, procedures, or effects of a characteristic, e.g., occurrence of disease.Cardiomyopathies: A group of diseases in which the dominant feature is the involvement of the CARDIAC MUSCLE itself. Cardiomyopathies are classified according to their predominant pathophysiological features (DILATED CARDIOMYOPATHY; HYPERTROPHIC CARDIOMYOPATHY; RESTRICTIVE CARDIOMYOPATHY) or their etiological/pathological factors (CARDIOMYOPATHY, ALCOHOLIC; ENDOCARDIAL FIBROELASTOSIS).Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Cardiomegaly: Enlargement of the HEART, usually indicated by a cardiothoracic ratio above 0.50. Heart enlargement may involve the right, the left, or both HEART VENTRICLES or HEART ATRIA. Cardiomegaly is a nonspecific symptom seen in patients with chronic systolic heart failure (HEART FAILURE) or several forms of CARDIOMYOPATHIES.Myocardial Infarction: NECROSIS of the MYOCARDIUM caused by an obstruction of the blood supply to the heart (CORONARY CIRCULATION).Myocytes, Cardiac: Striated muscle cells found in the heart. They are derived from cardiac myoblasts (MYOBLASTS, CARDIAC).Diuretics: Agents that promote the excretion of urine through their effects on kidney function.Prognosis: A prediction of the probable outcome of a disease based on a individual's condition and the usual course of the disease as seen in similar situations.Risk Factors: An aspect of personal behavior or lifestyle, environmental exposure, or inborn or inherited characteristic, which, on the basis of epidemiologic evidence, is known to be associated with a health-related condition considered important to prevent.Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors: A class of drugs whose main indications are the treatment of hypertension and heart failure. They exert their hemodynamic effect mainly by inhibiting the renin-angiotensin system. They also modulate sympathetic nervous system activity and increase prostaglandin synthesis. They cause mainly vasodilation and mild natriuresis without affecting heart rate and contractility.Heart Atria: The chambers of the heart, to which the BLOOD returns from the circulation.Heart-Assist Devices: Small pumps, often implantable, designed for temporarily assisting the heart, usually the LEFT VENTRICLE, to pump blood. They consist of a pumping chamber and a power source, which may be partially or totally external to the body and activated by electromagnetic motors.Hospitalization: The confinement of a patient in a hospital.Fetal Heart: The heart of the fetus of any viviparous animal. It refers to the heart in the postembryonic period and is differentiated from the embryonic heart (HEART/embryology) only on the basis of time.Propanolamines: AMINO ALCOHOLS containing the propanolamine (NH2CH2CHOHCH2) group and its derivatives.Myocardial Ischemia: A disorder of cardiac function caused by insufficient blood flow to the muscle tissue of the heart. The decreased blood flow may be due to narrowing of the coronary arteries (CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE), to obstruction by a thrombus (CORONARY THROMBOSIS), or less commonly, to diffuse narrowing of arterioles and other small vessels within the heart. Severe interruption of the blood supply to the myocardial tissue may result in necrosis of cardiac muscle (MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION).Exercise Test: Controlled physical activity which is performed in order to allow assessment of physiological functions, particularly cardiovascular and pulmonary, but also aerobic capacity. Maximal (most intense) exercise is usually required but submaximal exercise is also used.Systole: Period of contraction of the HEART, especially of the HEART VENTRICLES.Disease Models, Animal: Naturally occurring or experimentally induced animal diseases with pathological processes sufficiently similar to those of human diseases. They are used as study models for human diseases.Biological Markers: Measurable and quantifiable biological parameters (e.g., specific enzyme concentration, specific hormone concentration, specific gene phenotype distribution in a population, presence of biological substances) which serve as indices for health- and physiology-related assessments, such as disease risk, psychiatric disorders, environmental exposure and its effects, disease diagnosis, metabolic processes, substance abuse, pregnancy, cell line development, epidemiologic studies, etc.Heart Valves: Flaps of tissue that prevent regurgitation of BLOOD from the HEART VENTRICLES to the HEART ATRIA or from the PULMONARY ARTERIES or AORTA to the ventricles.Severity of Illness Index: Levels within a diagnostic group which are established by various measurement criteria applied to the seriousness of a patient's disorder.Heart Ventricles: The lower right and left chambers of the heart. The right ventricle pumps venous BLOOD into the LUNGS and the left ventricle pumps oxygenated blood into the systemic arterial circulation.Diastole: Post-systolic relaxation of the HEART, especially the HEART VENTRICLES.Retrospective Studies: Studies used to test etiologic hypotheses in which inferences about an exposure to putative causal factors are derived from data relating to characteristics of persons under study or to events or experiences in their past. The essential feature is that some of the persons under study have the disease or outcome of interest and their characteristics are compared with those of unaffected persons.Dogs: The domestic dog, Canis familiaris, comprising about 400 breeds, of the carnivore family CANIDAE. They are worldwide in distribution and live in association with people. (Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed, p1065)Predictive Value of Tests: In screening and diagnostic tests, the probability that a person with a positive test is a true positive (i.e., has the disease), is referred to as the predictive value of a positive test; whereas, the predictive value of a negative test is the probability that the person with a negative test does not have the disease. Predictive value is related to the sensitivity and specificity of the test.Exercise Tolerance: The exercise capacity of an individual as measured by endurance (maximal exercise duration and/or maximal attained work load) during an EXERCISE TEST.Digoxin: A cardiotonic glycoside obtained mainly from Digitalis lanata; it consists of three sugars and the aglycone DIGOXIGENIN. Digoxin has positive inotropic and negative chronotropic activity. It is used to control ventricular rate in ATRIAL FIBRILLATION and in the management of congestive heart failure with atrial fibrillation. Its use in congestive heart failure and sinus rhythm is less certain. The margin between toxic and therapeutic doses is small. (From Martindale, The Extra Pharmacopoeia, 30th ed, p666)Kidney Failure, Chronic: The end-stage of CHRONIC RENAL INSUFFICIENCY. It is characterized by the severe irreversible kidney damage (as measured by the level of PROTEINURIA) and the reduction in GLOMERULAR FILTRATION RATE to less than 15 ml per min (Kidney Foundation: Kidney Disease Outcome Quality Initiative, 2002). These patients generally require HEMODIALYSIS or KIDNEY TRANSPLANTATION.Atrial Natriuretic Factor: A potent natriuretic and vasodilatory peptide or mixture of different-sized low molecular weight PEPTIDES derived from a common precursor and secreted mainly by the HEART ATRIUM. All these peptides share a sequence of about 20 AMINO ACIDS.Ventricular Dysfunction: A condition in which HEART VENTRICLES exhibit impaired function.Carbazoles: Benzo-indoles similar to CARBOLINES which are pyrido-indoles. In plants, carbazoles are derived from indole and form some of the INDOLE ALKALOIDS.Sympathetic Nervous System: The thoracolumbar division of the autonomic nervous system. Sympathetic preganglionic fibers originate in neurons of the intermediolateral column of the spinal cord and project to the paravertebral and prevertebral ganglia, which in turn project to target organs. The sympathetic nervous system mediates the body's response to stressful situations, i.e., the fight or flight reactions. It often acts reciprocally to the parasympathetic system.Oxygen Consumption: The rate at which oxygen is used by a tissue; microliters of oxygen STPD used per milligram of tissue per hour; the rate at which oxygen enters the blood from alveolar gas, equal in the steady state to the consumption of oxygen by tissue metabolism throughout the body. (Stedman, 25th ed, p346)Patient Readmission: Subsequent admissions of a patient to a hospital or other health care institution for treatment.Echocardiography, Doppler: Measurement of intracardiac blood flow using an M-mode and/or two-dimensional (2-D) echocardiogram while simultaneously recording the spectrum of the audible Doppler signal (e.g., velocity, direction, amplitude, intensity, timing) reflected from the moving column of red blood cells.Heart Block: Impaired conduction of cardiac impulse that can occur anywhere along the conduction pathway, such as between the SINOATRIAL NODE and the right atrium (SA block) or between atria and ventricles (AV block). Heart blocks can be classified by the duration, frequency, or completeness of conduction block. Reversibility depends on the degree of structural or functional defects.Ventricular Pressure: The pressure within a CARDIAC VENTRICLE. Ventricular pressure waveforms can be measured in the beating heart by catheterization or estimated using imaging techniques (e.g., DOPPLER ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY). The information is useful in evaluating the function of the MYOCARDIUM; CARDIAC VALVES; and PERICARDIUM, particularly with simultaneous measurement of other (e.g., aortic or atrial) pressures.Risk Assessment: The qualitative or quantitative estimation of the likelihood of adverse effects that may result from exposure to specified health hazards or from the absence of beneficial influences. (Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1988)Proportional Hazards Models: Statistical models used in survival analysis that assert that the effect of the study factors on the hazard rate in the study population is multiplicative and does not change over time.Cardiovascular Agents: Agents that affect the rate or intensity of cardiac contraction, blood vessel diameter, or blood volume.Pulmonary Wedge Pressure: The blood pressure as recorded after wedging a CATHETER in a small PULMONARY ARTERY; believed to reflect the PRESSURE in the pulmonary CAPILLARIES.Double-Blind Method: A method of studying a drug or procedure in which both the subjects and investigators are kept unaware of who is actually getting which specific treatment.Mineralocorticoid Receptor Antagonists: Drugs that bind to and block the activation of MINERALOCORTICOID RECEPTORS by MINERALOCORTICOIDS such as ALDOSTERONE.Survival Analysis: A class of statistical procedures for estimating the survival function (function of time, starting with a population 100% well at a given time and providing the percentage of the population still well at later times). The survival analysis is then used for making inferences about the effects of treatments, prognostic factors, exposures, and other covariates on the function.Metoprolol: A selective adrenergic beta-1 blocking agent that is commonly used to treat ANGINA PECTORIS; HYPERTENSION; and CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS.Spironolactone: A potassium sparing diuretic that acts by antagonism of aldosterone in the distal renal tubules. It is used mainly in the treatment of refractory edema in patients with congestive heart failure, nephrotic syndrome, or hepatic cirrhosis. Its effects on the endocrine system are utilized in the treatments of hirsutism and acne but they can lead to adverse effects. (From Martindale, The Extra Pharmacopoeia, 30th ed, p827)Failure to Thrive: A condition of substandard growth or diminished capacity to maintain normal function.Cohort Studies: Studies in which subsets of a defined population are identified. These groups may or may not be exposed to factors hypothesized to influence the probability of the occurrence of a particular disease or other outcome. Cohorts are defined populations which, as a whole, are followed in an attempt to determine distinguishing subgroup characteristics.Survival Rate: The proportion of survivors in a group, e.g., of patients, studied and followed over a period, or the proportion of persons in a specified group alive at the beginning of a time interval who survive to the end of the interval. It is often studied using life table methods.Pacemaker, Artificial: A device designed to stimulate, by electric impulses, contraction of the heart muscles. It may be temporary (external) or permanent (internal or internal-external).Blood Pressure: PRESSURE of the BLOOD on the ARTERIES and other BLOOD VESSELS.Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy: The restoration of the sequential order of contraction and relaxation of the HEART ATRIA and HEART VENTRICLES by atrio-biventricular pacing.Coronary Disease: An imbalance between myocardial functional requirements and the capacity of the CORONARY VESSELS to supply sufficient blood flow. It is a form of MYOCARDIAL ISCHEMIA (insufficient blood supply to the heart muscle) caused by a decreased capacity of the coronary vessels.Electrocardiography: Recording of the moment-to-moment electromotive forces of the HEART as projected onto various sites on the body's surface, delineated as a scalar function of time. The recording is monitored by a tracing on slow moving chart paper or by observing it on a cardioscope, which is a CATHODE RAY TUBE DISPLAY.Norepinephrine: Precursor of epinephrine that is secreted by the adrenal medulla and is a widespread central and autonomic neurotransmitter. Norepinephrine is the principal transmitter of most postganglionic sympathetic fibers and of the diffuse projection system in the brain arising from the locus ceruleus. It is also found in plants and is used pharmacologically as a sympathomimetic.Acute Disease: Disease having a short and relatively severe course.Vasodilator Agents: Drugs used to cause dilation of the blood vessels.Atrial Fibrillation: Abnormal cardiac rhythm that is characterized by rapid, uncoordinated firing of electrical impulses in the upper chambers of the heart (HEART ATRIA). In such case, blood cannot be effectively pumped into the lower chambers of the heart (HEART VENTRICLES). It is caused by abnormal impulse generation.Death, Sudden, Cardiac: Unexpected rapid natural death due to cardiovascular collapse within one hour of initial symptoms. It is usually caused by the worsening of existing heart diseases. The sudden onset of symptoms, such as CHEST PAIN and CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS, particularly VENTRICULAR TACHYCARDIA, can lead to the loss of consciousness and cardiac arrest followed by biological death. (from Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine, 7th ed., 2005)Disease Progression: The worsening of a disease over time. This concept is most often used for chronic and incurable diseases where the stage of the disease is an important determinant of therapy and prognosis.Fibrosis: Any pathological condition where fibrous connective tissue invades any organ, usually as a consequence of inflammation or other injury.Cardio-Renal Syndrome: Condition where a primary dysfunction of either heart or kidney results in failure of the other organ (e.g., HEART FAILURE with worsening RENAL INSUFFICIENCY).Hypertrophy, Left Ventricular: Enlargement of the LEFT VENTRICLE of the heart. This increase in ventricular mass is attributed to sustained abnormal pressure or volume loads and is a contributor to cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.Arrhythmias, Cardiac: Any disturbances of the normal rhythmic beating of the heart or MYOCARDIAL CONTRACTION. Cardiac arrhythmias can be classified by the abnormalities in HEART RATE, disorders of electrical impulse generation, or impulse conduction.Kaplan-Meier Estimate: A nonparametric method of compiling LIFE TABLES or survival tables. It combines calculated probabilities of survival and estimates to allow for observations occurring beyond a measurement threshold, which are assumed to occur randomly. Time intervals are defined as ending each time an event occurs and are therefore unequal. (From Last, A Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1995)Liver Failure, Acute: A form of rapid-onset LIVER FAILURE, also known as fulminant hepatic failure, caused by severe liver injury or massive loss of HEPATOCYTES. It is characterized by sudden development of liver dysfunction and JAUNDICE. Acute liver failure may progress to exhibit cerebral dysfunction even HEPATIC COMA depending on the etiology that includes hepatic ISCHEMIA, drug toxicity, malignant infiltration, and viral hepatitis such as post-transfusion HEPATITIS B and HEPATITIS C.Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Calcium-Transporting ATPases: Calcium-transporting ATPases that catalyze the active transport of CALCIUM into the SARCOPLASMIC RETICULUM vesicles from the CYTOPLASM. They are primarily found in MUSCLE CELLS and play a role in the relaxation of MUSCLES.Dyspnea: Difficult or labored breathing.Myocarditis: Inflammatory processes of the muscular walls of the heart (MYOCARDIUM) which result in injury to the cardiac muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC). Manifestations range from subclinical to sudden death (DEATH, SUDDEN). Myocarditis in association with cardiac dysfunction is classified as inflammatory CARDIOMYOPATHY usually caused by INFECTION, autoimmune diseases, or responses to toxic substances. Myocarditis is also a common cause of DILATED CARDIOMYOPATHY and other cardiomyopathies.Rats, Sprague-Dawley: A strain of albino rat used widely for experimental purposes because of its calmness and ease of handling. It was developed by the Sprague-Dawley Animal Company.Natriuretic Agents: Endogenous or exogenous chemicals that regulate the WATER-ELECTROLYTE BALANCE in the body. They consist of peptides and non-peptide compounds.Incidence: The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from PREVALENCE, which refers to all cases, new or old, in the population at a given time.Anti-Arrhythmia Agents: Agents used for the treatment or prevention of cardiac arrhythmias. They may affect the polarization-repolarization phase of the action potential, its excitability or refractoriness, or impulse conduction or membrane responsiveness within cardiac fibers. Anti-arrhythmia agents are often classed into four main groups according to their mechanism of action: sodium channel blockade, beta-adrenergic blockade, repolarization prolongation, or calcium channel blockade.Hydrazones: Compounds of the general formula R:N.NR2, as resulting from the action of hydrazines with aldehydes or ketones. (Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed)Cheyne-Stokes Respiration: An abnormal pattern of breathing characterized by alternating periods of apnea and deep, rapid breathing. The cycle begins with slow, shallow breaths that gradually increase in depth and rate and is then followed by a period of apnea. The period of apnea can last 5 to 30 seconds, then the cycle repeats every 45 seconds to 3 minutes.United StatesNatriuretic Peptides: Peptides that regulate the WATER-ELECTROLYTE BALANCE in the body, also known as natriuretic peptide hormones. Several have been sequenced (ATRIAL NATRIURETIC FACTOR; BRAIN NATRIURETIC PEPTIDE; C-TYPE NATRIURETIC PEPTIDE).Rats, Wistar: A strain of albino rat developed at the Wistar Institute that has spread widely at other institutions. This has markedly diluted the original strain.Receptors, Adrenergic, beta: One of two major pharmacologically defined classes of adrenergic receptors. The beta adrenergic receptors play an important role in regulating CARDIAC MUSCLE contraction, SMOOTH MUSCLE relaxation, and GLYCOGENOLYSIS.Heart Arrest, Induced: A procedure to stop the contraction of MYOCARDIUM during HEART SURGERY. It is usually achieved with the use of chemicals (CARDIOPLEGIC SOLUTIONS) or cold temperature (such as chilled perfusate).Cardiac Output: The volume of BLOOD passing through the HEART per unit of time. It is usually expressed as liters (volume) per minute so as not to be confused with STROKE VOLUME (volume per beat).Comorbidity: The presence of co-existing or additional diseases with reference to an initial diagnosis or with reference to the index condition that is the subject of study. Comorbidity may affect the ability of affected individuals to function and also their survival; it may be used as a prognostic indicator for length of hospital stay, cost factors, and outcome or survival.Kidney: Body organ that filters blood for the secretion of URINE and that regulates ion concentrations.Cardiology: The study of the heart, its physiology, and its functions.Vascular Resistance: The force that opposes the flow of BLOOD through a vascular bed. It is equal to the difference in BLOOD PRESSURE across the vascular bed divided by the CARDIAC OUTPUT.Renal Insufficiency: Conditions in which the KIDNEYS perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate URINE, and maintain ELECTROLYTE BALANCE; BLOOD PRESSURE; and CALCIUM metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of PROTEINURIA) and reduction in GLOMERULAR FILTRATION RATE.Age Factors: Age as a constituent element or influence contributing to the production of a result. It may be applicable to the cause or the effect of a circumstance. It is used with human or animal concepts but should be differentiated from AGING, a physiological process, and TIME FACTORS which refers only to the passage of time.Defibrillators, Implantable: Implantable devices which continuously monitor the electrical activity of the heart and automatically detect and terminate ventricular tachycardia (TACHYCARDIA, VENTRICULAR) and VENTRICULAR FIBRILLATION. They consist of an impulse generator, batteries, and electrodes.Angiotensin II Type 1 Receptor Blockers: Agents that antagonize ANGIOTENSIN II TYPE 1 RECEPTOR. Included are ANGIOTENSIN II analogs such as SARALASIN and biphenylimidazoles such as LOSARTAN. Some are used as ANTIHYPERTENSIVE AGENTS.Case-Control Studies: Studies which start with the identification of persons with a disease of interest and a control (comparison, referent) group without the disease. The relationship of an attribute to the disease is examined by comparing diseased and non-diseased persons with regard to the frequency or levels of the attribute in each group.Cardiovascular Diseases: Pathological conditions involving the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM including the HEART; the BLOOD VESSELS; or the PERICARDIUM.Cardiac Catheterization: Procedures in which placement of CARDIAC CATHETERS is performed for therapeutic or diagnostic procedures.Bisoprolol: A cardioselective beta-1 adrenergic blocker. It is effective in the management of HYPERTENSION and ANGINA PECTORIS.Models, Cardiovascular: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of the cardiovascular system, processes, or phenomena; includes the use of mathematical equations, computers and other electronic equipment.Calcium: A basic element found in nearly all organized tissues. It is a member of the alkaline earth family of metals with the atomic symbol Ca, atomic number 20, and atomic weight 40. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and combines with phosphorus to form calcium phosphate in the bones and teeth. It is essential for the normal functioning of nerves and muscles and plays a role in blood coagulation (as factor IV) and in many enzymatic processes.Furosemide: A benzoic-sulfonamide-furan. It is a diuretic with fast onset and short duration that is used for EDEMA and chronic RENAL INSUFFICIENCY.Dose-Response Relationship, Drug: The relationship between the dose of an administered drug and the response of the organism to the drug.Multiple Organ Failure: A progressive condition usually characterized by combined failure of several organs such as the lungs, liver, kidney, along with some clotting mechanisms, usually postinjury or postoperative.Liver Failure: Severe inability of the LIVER to perform its normal metabolic functions, as evidenced by severe JAUNDICE and abnormal serum levels of AMMONIA; BILIRUBIN; ALKALINE PHOSPHATASE; ASPARTATE AMINOTRANSFERASE; LACTATE DEHYDROGENASES; and albumin/globulin ratio. (Blakiston's Gould Medical Dictionary, 4th ed)TetrazolesPyridazinesMitral Valve Insufficiency: Backflow of blood from the LEFT VENTRICLE into the LEFT ATRIUM due to imperfect closure of the MITRAL VALVE. This can lead to mitral valve regurgitation.Adrenergic beta-Agonists: Drugs that selectively bind to and activate beta-adrenergic receptors.Multivariate Analysis: A set of techniques used when variation in several variables has to be studied simultaneously. In statistics, multivariate analysis is interpreted as any analytic method that allows simultaneous study of two or more dependent variables.Enalapril: An angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor that is used to treat HYPERTENSION and HEART FAILURE.Antihypertensive Agents: Drugs used in the treatment of acute or chronic vascular HYPERTENSION regardless of pharmacological mechanism. Among the antihypertensive agents are DIURETICS; (especially DIURETICS, THIAZIDE); ADRENERGIC BETA-ANTAGONISTS; ADRENERGIC ALPHA-ANTAGONISTS; ANGIOTENSIN-CONVERTING ENZYME INHIBITORS; CALCIUM CHANNEL BLOCKERS; GANGLIONIC BLOCKERS; and VASODILATOR AGENTS.Exercise: Physical activity which is usually regular and done with the intention of improving or maintaining PHYSICAL FITNESS or HEALTH. Contrast with PHYSICAL EXERTION which is concerned largely with the physiologic and metabolic response to energy expenditure.Equipment Failure: Failure of equipment to perform to standard. The failure may be due to defects or improper use.Isosorbide Dinitrate: A vasodilator used in the treatment of ANGINA PECTORIS. Its actions are similar to NITROGLYCERIN but with a slower onset of action.Electrocardiography, Ambulatory: Method in which prolonged electrocardiographic recordings are made on a portable tape recorder (Holter-type system) or solid-state device ("real-time" system), while the patient undergoes normal daily activities. It is useful in the diagnosis and management of intermittent cardiac arrhythmias and transient myocardial ischemia.Hydralazine: A direct-acting vasodilator that is used as an antihypertensive agent.Reference Values: The range or frequency distribution of a measurement in a population (of organisms, organs or things) that has not been selected for the presence of disease or abnormality.Peptide Fragments: Partial proteins formed by partial hydrolysis of complete proteins or generated through PROTEIN ENGINEERING techniques.Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic: Works about clinical trials that involve at least one test treatment and one control treatment, concurrent enrollment and follow-up of the test- and control-treated groups, and in which the treatments to be administered are selected by a random process, such as the use of a random-numbers table.Quality of Life: A generic concept reflecting concern with the modification and enhancement of life attributes, e.g., physical, political, moral and social environment; the overall condition of a human life.Isoproterenol: Isopropyl analog of EPINEPHRINE; beta-sympathomimetic that acts on the heart, bronchi, skeletal muscle, alimentary tract, etc. It is used mainly as bronchodilator and heart stimulant.Ventricular Dysfunction, Right: A condition in which the RIGHT VENTRICLE of the heart was functionally impaired. This condition usually leads to HEART FAILURE or MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION, and other cardiovascular complications. Diagnosis is made by measuring the diminished ejection fraction and a depressed level of motility of the right ventricular wall.Captopril: A potent and specific inhibitor of PEPTIDYL-DIPEPTIDASE A. It blocks the conversion of ANGIOTENSIN I to ANGIOTENSIN II, a vasoconstrictor and important regulator of arterial blood pressure. Captopril acts to suppress the RENIN-ANGIOTENSIN SYSTEM and inhibits pressure responses to exogenous angiotensin.Heart, Artificial: A pumping mechanism that duplicates the output, rate, and blood pressure of the natural heart. It may replace the function of the entire heart or a portion of it, and may be an intracorporeal, extracorporeal, or paracorporeal heart. (Dorland, 28th ed)Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists: Agents that antagonize ANGIOTENSIN RECEPTORS. Many drugs in this class specifically target the ANGIOTENSIN TYPE 1 RECEPTOR.Cardiac Volume: The volume of the HEART, usually relating to the volume of BLOOD contained within it at various periods of the cardiac cycle. The amount of blood ejected from a ventricle at each beat is STROKE VOLUME.Heart Valve Prosthesis: A device that substitutes for a heart valve. It may be composed of biological material (BIOPROSTHESIS) and/or synthetic material.Autonomic Nervous System: The ENTERIC NERVOUS SYSTEM; PARASYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM; and SYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM taken together. Generally speaking, the autonomic nervous system regulates the internal environment during both peaceful activity and physical or emotional stress. Autonomic activity is controlled and integrated by the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM, especially the HYPOTHALAMUS and the SOLITARY NUCLEUS, which receive information relayed from VISCERAL AFFERENTS.Chi-Square Distribution: A distribution in which a variable is distributed like the sum of the squares of any given independent random variable, each of which has a normal distribution with mean of zero and variance of one. The chi-square test is a statistical test based on comparison of a test statistic to a chi-square distribution. The oldest of these tests are used to detect whether two or more population distributions differ from one another.Milrinone: A positive inotropic cardiotonic agent with vasodilator properties. It inhibits cAMP phosphodiesterase type 3 activity in myocardium and vascular smooth muscle. Milrinone is a derivative of amrinone and has 20-30 times the inotropic potency of amrinone.Sleep Apnea, Central: A condition associated with multiple episodes of sleep apnea which are distinguished from obstructive sleep apnea (SLEEP APNEA, OBSTRUCTIVE) by the complete cessation of efforts to breathe. This disorder is associated with dysfunction of central nervous system centers that regulate respiration.Rheumatic Heart Disease: Cardiac manifestation of systemic rheumatological conditions, such as RHEUMATIC FEVER. Rheumatic heart disease can involve any part the heart, most often the HEART VALVES and the ENDOCARDIUM.Cardiography, Impedance: A type of impedance plethysmography in which bioelectrical impedance is measured between electrodes positioned around the neck and around the lower thorax. It is used principally to calculate stroke volume and cardiac volume, but it is also related to myocardial contractility, thoracic fluid content, and circulation to the extremities.Acute Kidney Injury: Abrupt reduction in kidney function. Acute kidney injury encompasses the entire spectrum of the syndrome including acute kidney failure; ACUTE KIDNEY TUBULAR NECROSIS; and other less severe conditions.Endomyocardial Fibrosis: A condition characterized by the thickening of the ventricular ENDOCARDIUM and subendocardium (MYOCARDIUM), seen mostly in children and young adults in the TROPICAL CLIMATE. The fibrous tissue extends from the apex toward and often involves the HEART VALVES causing restrictive blood flow into the respective ventricles (CARDIOMYOPATHY, RESTRICTIVE).Prevalence: The total number of cases of a given disease in a specified population at a designated time. It is differentiated from INCIDENCE, which refers to the number of new cases in the population at a given time.Renin-Angiotensin System: A BLOOD PRESSURE regulating system of interacting components that include RENIN; ANGIOTENSINOGEN; ANGIOTENSIN CONVERTING ENZYME; ANGIOTENSIN I; ANGIOTENSIN II; and angiotensinase. Renin, an enzyme produced in the kidney, acts on angiotensinogen, an alpha-2 globulin produced by the liver, forming ANGIOTENSIN I. Angiotensin-converting enzyme, contained in the lung, acts on angiotensin I in the plasma converting it to ANGIOTENSIN II, an extremely powerful vasoconstrictor. Angiotensin II causes contraction of the arteriolar and renal VASCULAR SMOOTH MUSCLE, leading to retention of salt and water in the KIDNEY and increased arterial blood pressure. In addition, angiotensin II stimulates the release of ALDOSTERONE from the ADRENAL CORTEX, which in turn also increases salt and water retention in the kidney. Angiotensin-converting enzyme also breaks down BRADYKININ, a powerful vasodilator and component of the KALLIKREIN-KININ SYSTEM.Hospital Mortality: A vital statistic measuring or recording the rate of death from any cause in hospitalized populations.American Heart Association: A voluntary organization concerned with the prevention and treatment of heart and vascular diseases.Hypertension: Persistently high systemic arterial BLOOD PRESSURE. Based on multiple readings (BLOOD PRESSURE DETERMINATION), hypertension is currently defined as when SYSTOLIC PRESSURE is consistently greater than 140 mm Hg or when DIASTOLIC PRESSURE is consistently 90 mm Hg or more.Muscle, Skeletal: A subtype of striated muscle, attached by TENDONS to the SKELETON. Skeletal muscles are innervated and their movement can be consciously controlled. They are also called voluntary muscles.Tachycardia: Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a HEART RATE above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia.Baroreflex: A response by the BARORECEPTORS to increased BLOOD PRESSURE. Increased pressure stretches BLOOD VESSELS which activates the baroreceptors in the vessel walls. The net response of the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM is a reduction of central sympathetic outflow. This reduces blood pressure both by decreasing peripheral VASCULAR RESISTANCE and by lowering CARDIAC OUTPUT. Because the baroreceptors are tonically active, the baroreflex can compensate rapidly for both increases and decreases in blood pressure.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Cause of Death: Factors which produce cessation of all vital bodily functions. They can be analyzed from an epidemiologic viewpoint.Regression Analysis: Procedures for finding the mathematical function which best describes the relationship between a dependent variable and one or more independent variables. In linear regression (see LINEAR MODELS) the relationship is constrained to be a straight line and LEAST-SQUARES ANALYSIS is used to determine the best fit. In logistic regression (see LOGISTIC MODELS) the dependent variable is qualitative rather than continuously variable and LIKELIHOOD FUNCTIONS are used to find the best relationship. In multiple regression, the dependent variable is considered to depend on more than a single independent variable.Aldosterone: A hormone secreted by the ADRENAL CORTEX that regulates electrolyte and water balance by increasing the renal retention of sodium and the excretion of potassium.3-Iodobenzylguanidine: A guanidine analog with specific affinity for tissues of the sympathetic nervous system and related tumors. The radiolabeled forms are used as antineoplastic agents and radioactive imaging agents. (Merck Index, 12th ed) MIBG serves as a neuron-blocking agent which has a strong affinity for, and retention in, the adrenal medulla and also inhibits ADP-ribosyltransferase.Respiratory Insufficiency: Failure to adequately provide oxygen to cells of the body and to remove excess carbon dioxide from them. (Stedman, 25th ed)Xamoterol: A phenoxypropanolamine derivative that is a selective beta-1-adrenergic agonist.Heart Septum: This structure includes the thin muscular atrial septum between the two HEART ATRIA, and the thick muscular ventricular septum between the two HEART VENTRICLES.CreatinineSodium Potassium Chloride Symporter Inhibitors: Agents that inhibit SODIUM-POTASSIUM-CHLORIDE SYMPORTERS which are concentrated in the thick ascending limb at the junction of the LOOP OF HENLE and KIDNEY TUBULES, DISTAL. They act as DIURETICS. Excess use is associated with HYPOKALEMIA and HYPERGLYCEMIA.Drug Therapy, Combination: Therapy with two or more separate preparations given for a combined effect.Myocardial Reperfusion Injury: Damage to the MYOCARDIUM resulting from MYOCARDIAL REPERFUSION (restoration of blood flow to ischemic areas of the HEART.) Reperfusion takes place when there is spontaneous thrombolysis, THROMBOLYTIC THERAPY, collateral flow from other coronary vascular beds, or reversal of vasospasm.Amiodarone: An antianginal and class III antiarrhythmic drug. It increases the duration of ventricular and atrial muscle action by inhibiting POTASSIUM CHANNELS and VOLTAGE-GATED SODIUM CHANNELS. There is a resulting decrease in heart rate and in vascular resistance.Ventricular Function, Right: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the right HEART VENTRICLE.Sarcoplasmic Reticulum: A network of tubules and sacs in the cytoplasm of SKELETAL MUSCLE FIBERS that assist with muscle contraction and relaxation by releasing and storing calcium ions.Perfusion: Treatment process involving the injection of fluid into an organ or tissue.Dobutamine: A catecholamine derivative with specificity for BETA-1 ADRENERGIC RECEPTORS. It is commonly used as a cardiotonic agent after CARDIAC SURGERY and during DOBUTAMINE STRESS ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY.Reproducibility of Results: The statistical reproducibility of measurements (often in a clinical context), including the testing of instrumentation or techniques to obtain reproducible results. The concept includes reproducibility of physiological measurements, which may be used to develop rules to assess probability or prognosis, or response to a stimulus; reproducibility of occurrence of a condition; and reproducibility of experimental results.Heart Arrest: Cessation of heart beat or MYOCARDIAL CONTRACTION. If it is treated within a few minutes, heart arrest can be reversed in most cases to normal cardiac rhythm and effective circulation.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Heart Injuries: General or unspecified injuries to the heart.Receptors, Adrenergic, beta-1: A subclass of beta-adrenergic receptors (RECEPTORS, ADRENERGIC, BETA). The adrenergic beta-1 receptors are equally sensitive to EPINEPHRINE and NOREPINEPHRINE and bind the agonist DOBUTAMINE and the antagonist METOPROLOL with high affinity. They are found in the HEART, juxtaglomerular cells, and in the central and peripheral nervous systems.Cardiac Surgical Procedures: Surgery performed on the heart.Mice, Knockout: Strains of mice in which certain GENES of their GENOMES have been disrupted, or "knocked-out". To produce knockouts, using RECOMBINANT DNA technology, the normal DNA sequence of the gene being studied is altered to prevent synthesis of a normal gene product. Cloned cells in which this DNA alteration is successful are then injected into mouse EMBRYOS to produce chimeric mice. The chimeric mice are then bred to yield a strain in which all the cells of the mouse contain the disrupted gene. Knockout mice are used as EXPERIMENTAL ANIMAL MODELS for diseases (DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL) and to clarify the functions of the genes.Glomerular Filtration Rate: The volume of water filtered out of plasma through glomerular capillary walls into Bowman's capsules per unit of time. It is considered to be equivalent to INULIN clearance.Endothelin-1: A 21-amino acid peptide produced in a variety of tissues including endothelial and vascular smooth-muscle cells, neurons and astrocytes in the central nervous system, and endometrial cells. It acts as a modulator of vasomotor tone, cell proliferation, and hormone production. (N Eng J Med 1995;333(6):356-63)Mice, Inbred C57BLSensitivity and Specificity: Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. (From Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Digitalis Glycosides: Glycosides from plants of the genus DIGITALIS. Some of these are useful as cardiotonic and anti-arrhythmia agents. Included also are semi-synthetic derivatives of the naturally occurring glycosides. The term has sometimes been used more broadly to include all CARDIAC GLYCOSIDES, but here is restricted to those related to Digitalis.Regional Blood Flow: The flow of BLOOD through or around an organ or region of the body.Analysis of Variance: A statistical technique that isolates and assesses the contributions of categorical independent variables to variation in the mean of a continuous dependent variable.Logistic Models: Statistical models which describe the relationship between a qualitative dependent variable (that is, one which can take only certain discrete values, such as the presence or absence of a disease) and an independent variable. A common application is in epidemiology for estimating an individual's risk (probability of a disease) as a function of a given risk factor.Tachycardia, Ventricular: An abnormally rapid ventricular rhythm usually in excess of 150 beats per minute. It is generated within the ventricle below the BUNDLE OF HIS, either as autonomic impulse formation or reentrant impulse conduction. Depending on the etiology, onset of ventricular tachycardia can be paroxysmal (sudden) or nonparoxysmal, its wide QRS complexes can be uniform or polymorphic, and the ventricular beating may be independent of the atrial beating (AV dissociation).Oxidative Stress: A disturbance in the prooxidant-antioxidant balance in favor of the former, leading to potential damage. Indicators of oxidative stress include damaged DNA bases, protein oxidation products, and lipid peroxidation products (Sies, Oxidative Stress, 1991, pxv-xvi).