Congestive Heart Failure

Med Clin North Am. 2022 May;106(3):447-458. doi: 10.1016/j.mcna.2021.12.002. Epub 2022 Apr 4.


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States with an estimated 6 million adults living with heart failure. In patients with heart failure, the physical examination can provide important prognostic information and is also used to guide both diagnosis and management, including determining the need for inpatient versus outpatient management. Presenting symptoms include dyspnea, peripheral edema, orthopnea, paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea, and bendopnea. In patients with suspected heart failure, a "head-to-toe" physical examination approach is recommended with the addition of special maneuvers such as the measurement of jugular venous pressure, valsalva maneuver, and hepatojugular reflux as needed.

Keywords: Congestive heart failure; Jugular venous pressure; Valsalva.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dyspnea / diagnosis
  • Dyspnea / etiology
  • Heart Failure* / complications
  • Heart Failure* / diagnosis
  • Heart Failure* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases* / complications
  • Physical Examination
  • Prognosis
  • United States