Cardiac Practice Question
Mr. K is a middle-aged man who complains of fatigue. His systolic blood pressure is high, but his diastolic blood pressure is very low. Pulses in his legs are very weak, as if there is little blood flow to the lower half of his body. His breath sounds are normal. When you listen to his heart, you hear an abnormal second heart sound, and the doctor decides to inject a dye to follow the path of blood through his heart.
The dye shows that blood is moving from the aorta back into the left ventricle during diastole. Mr. K’s lab values have come back and they show that he has high renin and aldosterone levels, slightly low blood K+, and a high hematocrit.
Is his heart normal? If not, what is abnormal about it? How does the abnormality relate to th heart sounds? What has caused his high systolic blood pressure? Why are his blood K+ low and his hematocrit high?