Signs and Symptoms of Restrictive Cardiomyopathy

The first symptoms of restrictive cardiomyopathy (RCM) in children are usually lung related, which is often mistaken to be a lung infection or asthma. The second most common set of symptoms are swelling in the face, extremities, abdomen or liver. In these cases, the child may be referred to another specialists before a chest x-ray reveals an enlarged heart. Other times, an abnormal heart sound or signs of heart failure may lead to a diagnosis of RCM. In approximately 10% of cases, fainting is the first symptom.

Generally, symptoms of RCM are similar to those for congestive heart failure but are less severe in the early stages of the disease.

Common RCM symptoms may include:

  • Poor appetite and poor growth
  • Nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain
  • Difficulty breathing (dyspnea)
  • Wheezing or persistent dry cough
  • Chest pain (angina)
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Exercise intolerence
  • Swelling in face, hands, feet and legs (edema)
  • Excess fluid in the abdomen (ascites)
  • Enlarged liver (hepatomegaly)
  • Irregular heart rhythms or palpitations (arrhythmia)
  • Fainting (syncope)

Signs and Symptoms of Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy


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