Heart failure treatment: Why choose us?

BJC HealthCare works with Washington University physicians, BJC Medical Group, and providers across the region to deliver extraordinary care. We offer comprehensive diagnosis and treatment for all stages of heart failure. Thousands of people throughout the region turn to us each year for our experience and training in heart failure care.  

At our hospitals you’ll find:  

  • Recognized expertise: Several of our hospitals have been ranked as High Performing in heart failure care by U.S. News & World Report. This national recognition illustrates our commitment to providing high-quality care.
  • Range of treatments: We draw on many treatments to help you have a better quality of life. Our experts build a plan for your needs, from medication and cardiac rehabilitation to surgery and heart transplantation.  
  • Personalized care: Our specialists create personalized treatment plans to relieve your symptoms and keep your heart from further weakening. Whenever possible, we begin with a conservative (non-surgical) approach.  
  • Collaborative team: Cardiologists, heart surgeons, electrophysiologists, heart imaging specialists and other providers work together to plan your care.  
Heart Transplant Patient Story 

When Larry’s heart was failing, doctors implanted a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) in his heart to keep him strong until he could receive a transplant. 

Meet Larry
What is heart failure? 

Heart failure is a serious condition in which your heart can no longer pump enough blood to your body. It doesn’t mean your heart has stopped working, but heart failure gradually worsens and can cause more serious conditions.

Heart failure may result from a previous heart attack, coronary artery disease or other cardiovascular conditions. It can lead to fatigue, constant coughing, shortness of breath or an irregular heartbeat. Over time, heart failure can cause serious organ damage and life-threatening complications.

What medications treat heart failure?

Medications ease the workload on your heart so it can pump more efficiently. Depending on the causes of heart failure, you may need one or more medications, such as: 

  • ACE inhibitors
    ACE inhibitors relax your blood vessels and lower your blood pressure. Your heart doesn't have to work as hard to pump blood.
  • Diuretics
    Also called water pills, diuretics remove excess sodium and fluid buildup in your lungs, ankles and feet.
  • Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)
    ARBs lower your blood pressure if ACE inhibitors aren't right for you.
  • Angiotensin receptor-neprilysin inhibitors (ARNIs)
    ARNIs help open arteries, improve blood flow and reduce sodium retention.
  • Beta blockers
    Beta blockers slow your heart rate, lower your blood pressure and help your heart relax. We may recommend beta blockers with ACE inhibitors.
  • Digoxin
    Digoxin strengthens your heart's muscle contractions so it can pump more blood.
  • Inotropes
    Inotropes slow your heart rate and help your heart pump blood more effectively with fewer contractions.
Will I need a heart failure device or surgery?  

You may need surgery for an implantable device or a heart transplant if heart failure becomes severe. Our experienced team of heart surgeons is highly skilled in the most advanced surgical procedures for heart failure. We are among only a few providers in the region to offer left ventricular assist device implantation and heart transplant surgeries.  

Doctors can treat — and sometimes reverse — heart failure by treating the underlying cause. Procedures to repair a heart valve or control an irregular heart rhythm, for example, are treatments that provide solutions.  

Find out more about your options for heart surgery and vascular surgery.  

  • We’re regional heart surgery leaders specializing in coronary artery disease and aortic diseases.
  • We excel in minimally invasive endovascular techniques for treating aneurysms, carotid artery disease and peripheral artery disease.

Schedule your appointment

Call  (314) 362-9355  or  (800) 392-0936  to schedule your appointment with a specialist.