I am sorry to hear about your father's health problems. I strongly encourage you to discuss his issues with his cardiologist
, as it is not possible to provide an accurate answer without knowing the full details of his medical history.
Broadly, congestive heart failure refers to a situation where the heart cannot adequately pump blood to meet's the body's demands. Patients with this condition often develop edema, or a buildup of excess fluid, in their legs, lungs, abdomen, and other areas. There are numerous causes of heart failure, including prior heart attacks, familial disorders, autoimmune disorders, alcohol abuse, drug abuse, vitamin deficiencies, and viral infections. Some causes of heart failure are reversible, whereas others typically are not. Many medications are used to palliate the symptoms of heart failure as well as decrease mortality from this disease. This include diuretics (such as furosemide), beta blockers (like metoprolol), ACE inhibitors (such as lisinopril), and aldosterone antagonists (such as spironolactone). Depending on the specifics of your father's condition, he may benefit from an implantable defibrillator (ICD), as many people with heart failure are at risk for life-threatening arrhythmias. In rare circumstances, patients are candidates for heart transplant or an implantable heart pump (left ventricular assist device), although your dad's age and continued tobacco and alcohol use make these unlikely options. Unfortunately, heart failure typically increases one's risk for premature death. However, I cannot provide an accurate life expectancy without knowing the full details of his medical history, and it is critical that he see a cardiologist who specializes in heart failure therapy.