Cardiomegaly is a medical condition in which the heart is enlarged. It is more commonly referred to as an enlarged heart. The causes of cardiomegaly may vary. Many times this condition results from high blood pressure hypertension or coronary artery disease. An enlarged heart may not pump blood effectively, resulting in congestive heart failure. Cardiomegaly may improve over time, but many people with an enlarged heart need lifelong treatment with medications. Having an immediate family member who has or had cardiomegaly may make you more susceptible to getting this condition. Cardiomegaly is not a disease but rather a condition that can result from a host of other diseases such as obesity or coronary artery disease. Recent studies suggest that cardiomegaly is associated with a higher risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD). An enlarged heart is easier to treat when it's detected early, so talk to your doctor if you have concerns about your heart. If you have new signs or symptoms that might be related to your heart, consult a doctor.
The true incidence of cardiomegalies is unknown. As with other diseases, authorities depend on reported cases (at necropsy or as a part of clinical disease coding) to define the prevalence and incidence rates. The inconsistency in nomenclature and disease coding classifications for cardiomyopathies has led to collected data that only partially reflect the true incidence of these diseases.