causes of cardiomyopathy

Accessed Dec. 9, 2017. As the cardiovascular disease becomes worse it can lead to heart failure or arrhythmia. 19th ed. Diets that are highly deficient in thiamine, which includes vitamins B-1 and B-3, niacin, magnesium, calcium, and selenium, can trigger the development of cardiomyopathy. It typically occurs in adults between the ages of 20 and 60 years. Causes include viral infection of the heart muscle, excessive alcohol consumption, cocaine and the abuse of antidepressant drugs. Often, a cardiologist or pediatric cardiologist diagnoses and treats cardiomyopathy. Ommen SR, et al. Cardiology Clinics. Cardiomyopathy refers to diseases of the heart muscle. Stress cardiomyopathy: Stress cardiomyopathy, also known as “broken heart syndrome,” is a form of acute heart failure associated with severe stress. Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the muscles in the heart. Note that the heart walls (muscles) are much thicker (hypertrophied) in the heart with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Restrictive cardiomyopathy. Felker GM, Thompson RE, Hare JM, et al. Inherited dilated cardiomyopathy is caused by a change or mutation in one or more genes. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetic condition in which abnormal growth of the heart muscle fibers occurs, leading to the thickening or “hypertrophy” of these fibers. This limits how much blood the ventricle can take in and pump out, but blood flow is not blocked. See our safe care and visitor guidelines, plus trusted coronavirus information. What causes restrictive cardiomyopathy? 2019;37(1):95. Learn more about causes, types, and treatments. Information about cardiomyopathy, a disease of the heart muscle. Genetic mutations in the cells of the cardiac muscle, may lead to the development of this disease. An irregular heart beat and fainting may occur. Cardiomyopathy, or heart muscle disease, is a type of progressive heart disease in which the heart is abnormally enlarged, thickened, and/or stiffened. It causes your heart muscles to become enlarged. JAMA Cardiology 2016;1(3):333. Other types of cardiomyopathy fall into this category. Most of the cases of cardiomyopathy are hereditary. Restrictive cardiomyopathy can occur for no known reason (idiopathic), or it can by caused by a disease elsewhere in the body that affects the heart, such as when iron builds up in the heart muscle (hemochromatosis). The result can be heart failure or irregular … Restrictive cardiomyopathy is not usually inherited and its cause is often unknown. Often the cause of the cardiomyopathy is unknown. Genetic mutations in the cells of the cardiac muscle, may lead to the development of this disease. Causes of cardiomyopathy. In most cases of dilated cardiomyopathy, the cause is unknown. Certain cancer medications 6. Those affected are at an increased risk of sudden cardiac death. The specific device depends on the symptoms. In this rare type of cardiomyopathy, the muscle in the lower right heart chamber (right ventricle) is replaced by scar tissue, which can lead to heart rhythm problems. Cardiomyopathy: A condition characterized by an increase in the size of the heart. New medication may treat underlying causes of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2020, presentation P1732 While the cause of cardiomyopathy is not always known, it can be brought on by various other conditions and risk factors, including coronary artery disease, viral infection in the heart, various inherited diseases, excess alcohol consumption, smoking and obesity. High blood pressure (hypertension) 4. Causes of Cardiomyopathy. Some possible surgical procedures for cardiomyopathy include: This surgery treats hypertrophic cardiomyopathy with obstruction of blood flow. Learn more in this…, © 2004-2020 Healthline Media UK Ltd, Brighton, UK, a Red Ventures Company. Treatment for cardiomyopathy depends on the extent of the symptoms, as well as the form of the disease. Illustrations of a normal heart (left) and a heart with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. It may block or reduce the blood flow from the left ventricle to the aorta. Cardiomyopathy is a disease that involves a weakened heart muscle. Heartburn and nausea are both common digestive issues. Dilated cardiomyopathy is the most common type of cardiomyopathy. There are four main things that are known to cause cardiomyopathy. The disease often starts in the left ventricle, but it can eventually also affect the right ventricle. The main goal of treatment is to reduce symptoms – cardiomyopathy is not curable. In obstructive HCM, the wall (septum) between the two bottom chambers of the heart thickens. As the disease worsens, shortness of breath, feeling tired, and swelling of the legs may occur, due to the onset of heart failure. Pheochromocytoma as a reversible cause of cardiomyopathy: Analysis and review of the literature Int J Cardiol. The most common symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pain, and fatigue. There are different types of cardiomyopathy depending on the cause of the damage to the heart. Most types of cardiomyopathy are inherited and are seen in children and younger people. In about one-third of affected children, diagnosis occurs before the age of 1 year. Implanted devices include: When symptoms are severe, surgery might be an option. The most common cause of acquired cardiomyopathy is myocarditis, a viral infection that weakens the heart muscle. Alcohol abuse 5. Although most cases are idiopathic, a number of conditions (e.g., coronary artery disease, wet beriberi), infections (e.g., Coxsackie B virus, Chagas disease), and substances (e.g., heavy drinking, cocaine) have been identified as causes. Removing the thickened tissue improves blood flow out of the heart. The walls of the pumping chamber can also become stiff. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Advertising revenue supports our not-for-profit mission. In these cases, the treatment would be specific to the root condition. These doctors specialize in heart diseases. 9/13/2015. What causes primary cardiomyopathy? According to the Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation, it is the second most common form of cardiomyopathy in children. Long B, et al. Make a donation. Morrow ES. However, as the condition progresses, a person may experience the following symptoms with varying degrees of severity: The cause of cardiomyopathy is not always clear, but there are some known risk factors. Doctors will carry out a physical exam and diagnostic tests to confirm cardiomyopathy. Cardiomyopathy and myocarditis. Managing stress, quitting smoking, and staying physically active are also beneficial for people with cardiomyopathy. Mixed causes. There are different types of cardiomyopathy and different causes. Because some types of cardiomyopathy can be hereditary, if you have it your doctor might advise that your family members be checked. Restrictive cardiomyopathy may be caused by amyloidosis, hemochromatosis, and some cancer treatments. More healthful lifestyle habits may also slow the progression of the disease. It causes thickening of the heart muscle (especially the ventricles, or lower heart chambers), left ventricular stiffness, mitral valve changes and cellular changes. Learn more here. In most cases, the exact reason for dilated cardiomyopathy is unknown and the condition is called ‘ idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy ’. It is more common in older adults and can result from infiltrative conditions — those involving the accumulation of abnormal substances in bodily tissues — such as amyloidosis. Cardiomyopathy results in the failure of the heart muscle to meet the needs of the body for oxygen rich blood and removal of carbon dioxide and other waste products. They can occur together, especially if a person experiences indigestion. 2017 Dec 15;249:319-323. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcard.2017.07.014. Dilated cardiomyopathy may also result from alcohol, heavy metals, coronary artery disease, cocaine use, and viral infections. In this type of cardiomyopathy, the pumping ability of your heart's main pumping chamber — the left ventricle — becomes enlarged (dilated) and can't effectively pump blood out of the heart. When no cause can be found the disorder is known as "idiopathic restrictive cardiomyopathy." Cardiomyopathy may be caused by external factors or other non-genetic diseases. You can help reduce your chance of cardiomyopathy and other types of heart disease by living a heart-healthy lifestyle and making lifestyle choices such as: Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. Your doctor will diagnose cardiomyopathy based on your medical history, family history, a physical exam and diagnostic test results. Most affected people have a family history of the disease, and some genetic mutations have been linked to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Dilated cardiomyopathy can affect both children and adults. See detailed information below for a list of 135 causes of Cardiomyopathy, Symptom Checker, including diseases and drug side effect causes. It’s a … An earlier diagnosis may improve a person’s outlook. Arrhythmia. Biagini E, Coccolo F, Ferlito M, et al. Viral infections in the heart are a major cause of cardiomyopathy. However, a heart transplant is an extensive process for which not everyone qualifies. Viral infections in the heart are a major cause of cardiomyopathy. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is the most common primary cardiomyopathy and can cause exertional dyspnea, presyncope, atypical chest pain, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death. Some things that can cause cardiomyopathy are possesing long-term high blood pressure, heart valve problems, heart tissue … https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/arrhythmia#Treatment. Dilated. All rights reserved. Nguyen A, et al. The exact cause of cardiomyopathy, especially in younger adults and children, can be difficult to determine. Thickening of the heart muscle (myocardium) occurs most commonly at the septum. Causes of Cardiomyopathy: The specific cause of cardiomyopathy is not known. One of the major advances in our understanding of cardiomyopathies is the use of genetic testing. Causes can include infections, drugs, alcohol use, and gene mutations in up to 35 percent of cases. Usually, treatment includes a combination of the following: Lifestyle changes can help reduce the severity of conditions that may have led to cardiomyopathy. Unclassified cardiomyopathy. Treatment — which might include medications, surgically implanted devices or, in severe cases, a heart transplant — depends on which type of cardiomyopathy you have and how serious it is. Diseases that can damage the heart, such as hemochromatosis, sarcoidosis, or amyloidosis. It is essential to discuss exercise programs with a doctor or another healthcare professional before starting one. The thickening makes the chambers of the heart stiff and affects blood flow. Symptoms vary from none to feeling tired, leg swelling, and shortness of breath. Restrictive cardiomyopathy is not usually inherited and its cause is often unknown. Sep 22, 2020. Causes. Most of the cases of cardiomyopathy are hereditary. While there are a variety of different causes of cardiomyopathy, one of the biggest causes is due to various nutritional deficiencies. Patients who have symptoms of heart insufficiency— i.e. 9/13/2015. Surgical Myectomy: Subaortic, Midventricular, and Apical. Any use of this site constitutes your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy linked below. Lifestyle changes. Accessed Dec. 12, 2017. Infections, including those caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites 8. Cardiomyopathy is a disease that involves the weakening of the heart muscle. In arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy, fibrotic and fatty tissue replaces the healthy tissues of the right ventricle, which may cause irregular heart rhythms. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here. American Journal of Emergency Medicine 2020;38:1504. Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia. Lifestyle changes may include following a healthful diet, which involves limiting the intake of trans fats, saturated fats, added sugar, and salt. DCM can be inherited, but it’s usually caused by other things, including: Severe coronary artery disease Alcoholism Thyroid disease Diabetes Viral infections of the heart Heart valve abnormalities Drugs that damage the heart Restrictive cardiomyopathy occurs when the tissues of the ventricles become rigid and cannot fill with blood properly. Specific causes include diseases that result in deposits in the heart, metabolic diseases, genetic mutations, chemotherapy or radiation, and metastatic cancers. It usually appears after a significant stressor, either physical or emotional; when caused by the latter, the condition is sometimes called broken heart syndrome. Restrictive. This least common type of cardiomyopathy can occur at any age, but it most often affects older people. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy may not cause symptoms until later in life. They are likely to use one or more of the following diagnostic tests: The intention of cardiomyopathy treatment is to control symptoms, slow the progression of the condition, and prevent sudden cardiac death. It's often caused by genetic mutations. The cause of dilated cardiomyopathy often can't be determined. Hospital volume outcomes after septal myectomy and alcohol septal ablation for treatment of obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy US nationwide inpatient database, 2003-2011. Email Print. The causes of cardiomyopathy in dogs are mostly unknown or highly debated, but there are a few factors that put dogs more at risk for developing the condition.. Additional treatment in more severe cases may include implanted devices or surgery. A weak heart cannot pump blood easily. Learn more about the different types and their effects in this article. Long-term high blood pressure 2. Cardiomyopathy is a major cause of heart failure and one of the most common conditions leading to heart transplantation. Prevention. Usually, medications are part of a cardiomyopathy treatment plan. There might be no signs or symptoms in the early stages of cardiomyopathy. Known causes include: Build-up of scar tissue (idiopathic is the most common cause) Build-up of abnormal proteins (amyloidosis) in the heart muscle; Chemotherapy or … Cardiomyopathy can lead to abnormal heart rhythms. In some cases, another disease or its treatment causes cardiomyopathy. There are many different causes of cardiomyopathy, including severe and prolonged high blood pressure, iron overload, autoimmune diseases, drug abuse, chemotherapy, heart infections and end-stage kidney disease. HCM is a result of one or more mutations of the genes that code for proteins of the heart which are … The thickened heart muscle can make it harder for the heart to work properly. Cardiomyopathy Causes. Learn more about causes, risk factors, screening and prevention, signs and symptoms, diagnoses, and treatments for cardiomyopathy, and how to … It may also result in chest pain or fainting. 2. This type involves abnormal thickening of your heart muscle, particularly affecting the muscle of your heart's main pumping chamber (left ventricle). The postpartum cardiomyopathy that occurs in women is associated with a sudden change in cardiovascular function and blood volume, though the exact cause is not known. In some people, however, it's the result of another condition (acquired) or passed on from a parent (inherited). The heart becomes less able to pump blood throughout the body and incapable of maintaining a normal electrical rhythm. Cardiomyopathy (kahr-dee-o-my-OP-uh-thee) is a disease of the heart muscle that makes it harder for your heart to pump blood to the rest of your body. According to research studies, selenium seems to be the most critical nutrient necessary for preventing cardiomyopa… What causes cardiomyopathy? Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy—one case per year? Underlying causes and long-term survival in patients with initially unexplained cardiomyopathy. Dilated cardiomyopathy, experts say, is probably the most common cardiomyopathy worldwide. The condition makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood throughout the body. A person with cardiomyopathy may experience shortness of breath and heart palpitations. Exposure to toxins, such as lead, mercury and cobalt 9. Risk…. It involves removing part of the septum that is protruding into the left ventricle. The abnormal heart muscle seen in cardiomyopathy is not caused by blocked arteries in the heart (coronary artery disease), high blood pressure (hypertension), disease of the heart valves (valvular disease) or congenital heart disease. Broken heart syndrome is caused by extreme emotional or physical stress. It occurs when your heart walls thicken and prevent blood from flowing through your heart. These abnormal heart rhythms can result in fainting or, in some cases, sudden death if your heart stops beating effectively. Treating cardiomyopathy. The most common cause of acquired cardiomyopathy is myocarditis, a viral infection that weakens the heart muscle. Often the cause of the cardiomyopathy is unknown. Although this type can affect people of all ages, it occurs most often in middle-aged people and is more likely to affect men. Breathlessness with exertion or even at rest, Bloating of the abdomen due to fluid buildup, Heartbeats that feel rapid, pounding or fluttering, Metabolic disorders, such as obesity, thyroid disease or diabetes, Nutritional deficiencies of essential vitamins or minerals, such as thiamin (vitamin B-1), Drinking too much alcohol over many years, Use of cocaine, amphetamines or anabolic steroids, Use of some chemotherapy drugs and radiation to treat cancer, Certain infections, especially those that inflame the heart, Iron buildup in your heart muscle (hemochromatosis), A condition that causes inflammation and can cause lumps of cells to grow in the heart and other organs (sarcoidosis), A disorder that causes the buildup of abnormal proteins (amyloidosis), Family history of cardiomyopathy, heart failure and sudden cardiac arrest, Conditions that affect the heart, including a past heart attack, coronary artery disease or an infection in the heart (ischemic cardiomyopathy), Obesity, which makes the heart work harder, Illicit drug use, such as cocaine, amphetamines and anabolic steroids, Certain chemotherapy drugs and radiation therapy for cancer, Certain diseases, such as diabetes, an under- or overactive thyroid gland, or a disorder that causes the body to store excess iron (hemochromatosis), Other conditions that affect the heart, such as a disorder that causes the buildup of abnormal proteins (amyloidosis), a disease that causes inflammation and can cause lumps of cells to grow in the heart and other organs (sarcoidosis), or connective tissue disorders, Controlling high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Blood thinners help reduce the risk of blood clots and heart disease. Find out what causes it, how it’s treated, and ways to prevent it. Cooper LT. Accessed Dec. 9, 2017. Cardiomyopathy: Introduction. Viral infection. May 06, 2016. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. The condition can also cause abnormal heart rhythms. Ommen SR (expert opinion). There are several causes of cardiomyopathy. A disease or condition that can lead to cardiomyopathy, such as ischemic heart disease, heart attack, or a viral infection that inflames the heart muscle. Ischemic cardiomyopathy (IC) is a condition that occurs when the heart muscle is weakened. An arrhythmia is an irregular heartbeat. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/cardiomyopathy. This can lead to a backward flow of blood. Causes include viral infection of the heart muscle, excessive alcohol consumption, cocaine and the abuse of antidepressant drugs. Depending on the cause, primary cardiomyopathy can be divided into three groups: genetic, acquired, and mixed (both genetic and non-genetic). N Engl J Med 2000; 342:1077. It can also cause heart valves problems and even heart failure. Email Print. The most common cause is coronary artery disease or heart attack. In such cases, a virus such as Coxsackie B causes the body's immune system to malfunction leading to inflammation of the heart muscle. Genetic causes. It is a hereditary genetic condition. Eventually, it may lead to heart failure. It … Obesity 3. Accessed Dec. 9, 2017. Cardiomyopathy is diseased heart muscle that cannot function (contract) adequately. Because cardiomyopathy causes the heart to enlarge, the heart valves might not close properly. Stress-induced cardiomyopathy is a rare disease and it is more likely the individual describing "death by a broken a heart," was just being poetic, but it turns out that severe emotional distress can actually trigger a potentially fatal cardiac event. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 7, 2019. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a condition in which the heart becomes thickened without an obvious cause. When the presence or severity of the cardiomyopathy observed in a patient cannot be explained by acquired causes, genetic t… Some cases cause acute symptoms that require hospitalization and even advanced life support. Diabetes 2. Idiopathic means that there is no known cause. Heart valve problems 5. It can also increase the risk of electrical disturbances, called arrhythmias. Keep reading to learn more about cardiomyopathy, including its symptoms, causes, and treatment. Drinking more than the recommended amount of alcohol can damage the heart and liver. Causes of stress-induced cardiomyopathy. This content does not have an English version. For example, conditions that lead to inflammation or damage of the heart can increase a person’s risk of cardiomyopathy. Shared protein fingerprint could simplify treatment of common inherited heart disease. Cocaine use and abuse 7. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Cardiomyopathy. In some cases, another disease or its treatment causes cardiomyopathy. Early on there may be few or no symptoms. Others may be chronic but stable. Takotsubo cardiomyopathy or Takotsubo syndrome (TTS), also known as stress cardiomyopathy, is a type of non-ischemic cardiomyopathy in which there is a sudden temporary weakening of the muscular portion of the heart. In primary cardiomyopathy, the cause is not known, while in secondary cardiomyopathy, tests are able to show the cause… Dilated cardiomyopathy and restrictive cardiomyopathy can be caused both by genetic and non-genetic causes. Kim LK, et al. Learn more about some other types of heart disease here. In rare instances, diseased heart muscle tissue is replaced with scar tissue. © 1998-2020 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). Chronic rapid heart rate 4. See our safety precautions in response to COVID-19. Treating cardiomyopathy. The main types of cardiomyopathy include dilated, hypertrophic and restrictive cardiomyopathy. Arrhythmogenic. This content does not have an Arabic version. Causes of Cardiomyopathy: The specific cause of cardiomyopathy is not known. There are several potential different causes for cardiomyopathy: Pregnancy; Illicit substances such as amphetamines; Genetics, as some types of cardiomyopathies may be genetically inherited; Other health conditions such as cardiac sarcoidosis (lumps of cells and inflammation in the heart) and haemochromatosis (too much iron in the heart); Over-consumption of alcohol Anyone who has a strong family history of cardiomyopathy or experiences one or more of the symptoms of this disease should see a doctor. People with certain forms of cardiomyopathy with advanced heart failure might be eligible for heart transplantation. Arrhythmias 10. Metabolic disorders, such as obesity, thyroid disease or diabetes 6. This results in the heart being less able to pump blood effectively and also may cause electrical conduction problems.. People who have HCM may have a range of symptoms. This cardiovascular disease enlarges the heart, making it thick. This is what makes this particular form of cardiomyopathy the most preventable type. Most types of cardiomyopathy are treated with medications and lifestyle changes. This might include complex congenital (present at birth) heart disease, nutritional deficiencies, uncontrollable, fast heart rhythms, or certain types of … The main causes of cardiomyopathy are: a viral infection affecting the heart; heavy alcohol consumption; a heart attack or coronary heart disease; family history of cardiomyopathy; Cardiomyopathy is sometimes called either primary or secondary. Other Causes of Peripartum Cardiomyopathy. Cardiomyopathy Causes. Let your doctor know if you have a family history of the condition. In some people, the condition worsens quickly; in others, it might not worsen for a long time. Heart tissue damage from a heart attack 3. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy can develop at any age, but the condition tends to be more severe if it becomes apparent during childhood. An infection in your heart can damage the heart muscle, but it may not show up for months, or longer. Cardiomyopathy may be congenital (present at birth) or acquired (meaning it develops during the person’s lifetime). There are many different causes of cardiomyopathy, including severe and prolonged high blood pressure, iron overload, autoimmune diseases, drug abuse, chemotherapy, heart infections and end-stage kidney disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cardiomyopathy may occur in as many as 1 in 500 people, but it frequently goes undiagnosed. Some examples of causes of cardiomyopathy include coronary artery disease, alcohol abuse, and genetic conditions. There are treatments for all forms of cardiomyopathy, including the two most common causes of symptoms: heart failure and abnormal heart rhythms. In nonobstructive HCM, the heart’s main pumping chamber still becomes stiff. The main causes of cardiomyopathy are: a viral infection affecting the heart; heavy alcohol consumption; a heart attack or coronary heart disease; family history of cardiomyopathy; Cardiomyopathy is sometimes called either primary or secondary. Alcohol. Complications can include heart failure, heart valve disease, or an irregular heartbeat. What causes cardiomyopathy? http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/More/Cardiomyopathy/What-Is-Cardiomyopathy-in-Adults_UCM_444168_Article.jsp#.Wi_ieEtrwmI. Sometimes damage can be reversed if you stop drinking alcohol completely. Cardiomyopathy can lead to heart failure. Dilated cardiomyopathy. When your heart has difficulty pumping blood, it can cause irregular heartbeat. Check out these best-sellers and special offers on books and newsletters from Mayo Clinic. A heart infection called myocarditis, a protein abnormality in the heart muscle, chemotherapy drugs, metabolic disorders or muscle disorders are among the factors that can cause cardiomyopathy in a child or teenager. A widowmaker heart attack occurs when a blood clot or cholesterol deposit blocks the left anterior descending artery. 1. There are various forms of cardiomyopathy, including dilated cardiomyopathy, which is the most common. Dilated-hypokinetic evolution of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: prevalence, incidence, risk factors, and prognostic implications in pediatric and adult patients. Diabetes or other metabolic diseases, or severe obesity. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. We also discuss some treatment options…, Symptoms of a heart attack include chest pain and shortness of breath. A single copy of these materials may be reprinted for noncommercial personal use only. Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Mayo Clinic School of Continuous Professional Development, Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education, See our safety precautions in response to COVID-19, Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), Implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs), Sharing Mayo Clinic: A new heart and new adventures for Elise, FREE book offer – Mayo Clinic Health Letter. See your doctor if you have one or more signs or symptoms associated with cardiomyopathy. All rights reserved. But as the condition advances, signs and symptoms usually appear, including: Signs and symptoms tend to get worse unless treated. The parts of the heart most commonly affected are the interventricular septum and the ventricles. "Mayo," "Mayo Clinic," "MayoClinic.org," "Mayo Clinic Healthy Living," and the triple-shield Mayo Clinic logo are trademarks of Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. In some cases, this process can also occur in the left ventricle. Cardiomyopathy is an umbrella term for a variety of conditions that affect the heart muscle. There are a few types of cardiomyopathy, including the following: Dilated cardiomyopathy is the most common form of the disease. Cardiomyopathy can be caused by inherited genetic factors or by nongenetic (acquired) factors such as infection or trauma. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) However, numerous factors can cause the left ventricle to dilate and weaken, including: 1. In DCM around 25 to 35 percent of the cases are caused by mutations in the genes for different proteins in the heart. In rare cases it may be caused by pregnancy or connective tissue disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis. More rarely in children, the cause of cardiomyopathy is identifiable. 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