Aging and Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction

Compr Physiol. 2022 Aug 11;12(4):1-10. doi: 10.1002/cphy.c210035.


Heart failure is a clinical syndrome characterized by the inability of the cardiovascular system to provide adequate cardiac output at normal filling pressures. This results in a clinical syndrome characterized by dyspnea, edema, and decreased exertional tolerance. Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is an increasingly common disease, and the incidence of HFpEF increases with age. There are a variety of factors which contribute to the development of HFpEF, including the presence of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and other pro-inflammatory states. These comorbid conditions result in changes at the biochemical and cell signaling level which ultimately lead to a disease with a great deal of phenotypic heterogeneity. In general, the physiologic dysfunction of HFpEF is characterized by vascular stiffness, increased cardiac filling pressures, pulmonary hypertension, and impaired volume management. The normal and abnormal processes associated with aging serve as an accelerant in this process, resulting in the hypothesis that HFpEF represents a form of presbycardia. In this article, we aim to review the processes importance of aging in the development of HFpEF by examining the disease and its causes from the biochemical to physiologic level. © 2022 American Physiological Society. Compr Physiol 12: 1-10, 2022.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aging
  • Cardiac Output
  • Heart Failure*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary*
  • Stroke Volume / physiology