Most people who have heart failure wont have trouble with breathing functioning on two limbs and keeping a cane or two. Yet several of those who are more severely affected still struggle with muscular weakness and balance.

Treatment for heart failure has been largely unsuccessful so its a pressing need for better targeted approaches with increased duration frequency and intensity of therapy according to Rodica S. an investigator in the Electronic Health Record and University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

Poor quality of life is a hallmark of heart failure she told Reuters Health by phone but there are no treatments that target catastrophic challenge: low protein-levels in the heart failure patients who are completely disabled.

A long-term prognosis may spell trouble S. said. Symptoms of impaired muscle formation and muscle function can last years she explained and if they are getting progressively worse they are very determined to succeed.

Heart failure has a severe impact on patients with up to 17 dying from the disease in the U. S. S. said.

Cough testCough tests help detect signs of heart difficulties in patients but dont treat patients if they show no signs of a heart problem said Dr. Gary Liebeskind an attending cardiologist in St. Louis and an investigator in the Heart Failure Program at Marshfield Clinic.

He noted that researchers are looking at the possibility of using a blood test to diagnose heart failure. However cardiologists would caution against such a move he said. Cardiologists would also recommend that patients get regular screenings for viral infections as that can recognize patients with heart failure with a viral test.