People with heart failure don’t just need to cope with the physical limitations of heart failure, but also with emotional issues that can impact their life as well as those closest to them.

Learning that you have a serious condition like heart failure may initially provoke feelings of anxiety, anger or depression, and these feelings may be shared, to a greater or lesser extent, by your spouse or partner, family members and close friends. These feelings should fade as you begin to accept the diagnosis, take charge of your health and make positive lifestyle changes. However, your relationships may have to change to accommodate these changes.

This section looks at changes that may happen in your relationships following a diagnosis of heart failure, how best to manage these changes and how to talk about your condition with those closest to you.

Click on the links below to learn more.

Talking to your family about your heart failure

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. is a European Society of Cardiology website

The 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.

Back to top