DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic staff
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Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a disease in which the heart muscle (myocardium) becomes abnormally thick — or hypertrophied. This thickened heart muscle can make it harder for the heart to pump blood. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy may also affect the heart's electrical system.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy often goes undiagnosed, because many of those with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy have few, if any, symptoms. In a small number of people with this condition, the thickened heart muscle can cause signs and symptoms, such as shortness of breath and problems in the heart's electrical system resulting in life-threatening abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias).
Fortunately, people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy often lead normal lives with no significant problems.
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