Discussions with your family and/or carer

While it may be difficult to discuss death and dying with your family and friends, everyone will feel better if they know your wishes.

As family and friends may be afraid to talk about this subject, you may need to bring up the topic first. Below are a few suggestions on how to start a conversation about this often-sensitive subject:

  • I’d like to talk about the help we will need if my heart failure gets worse
  • Let’s talk about what we can do to make my life easier should my heart failure get worse
  • We should look at what kind of support is available when I can no longer take care of myself
  • I’d like to talk about what you should do in the event of an emergency due to my heart failure.

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ESC Guidelines for Heart Failure

What patients need to know

This guide for patients from the European Society of Cardiology aims to provide an overview of the latest evidence-based recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure.

In particular, it should help patients to understand the:

  • main types of heart failure
  • medicines used to treat heart failure
  • devices that may be appropriate
  • importance of rehabilitation
  • management by a multidisciplinary team
  • importance of self-care in managing your own condition

Learn more


A series of 9 simple, captivating animations explaining heart failure and its treatment.

These narrated animations explain how a healthy heart works, what happens to it in heart failure and how various treatments work to improve your health.


In this section you can watch, listen or read interviews with other people with heart failure and their caregivers.


and share your own views and experiences with other patients, families and caregivers.

heartfailurematters.org is a European Society of Cardiology website

The heartfailurematters.org website was developed under the direction of the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). The ESC is a world leader in the discovery and dissemination of best practices in cardiovascular medicine. Our members and decision-makers are healthcare professionals who volunteer their time and expertise to represent professionals in the field of cardiology in Europe and beyond.

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