Otherwise known as coronary arterystenosis, coronary artery disease is an issue that causes damage of further disease to the heart’s major blood vessels. A buildup of plaque causes arteries to narrow, and in some cases, close, limiting blood flow to the heart.
Coronary artery disease can range from no symptoms, to chest pain, to a heart attack. Treatments include lifestyle changes, medications, angioplasty, and surgery.
We use a number of tests and asses your lifestyle and living habits, to see your likelihood of acquiring CAD. As we assess this disease we have a much higher chance of preventing it from entering any advanced stages or doing irreversible damage to the heart.
Very rarely do patients experience pronounced symptoms of coronary artery disease, and often the blockage of the coronary artery can only be detected through an angiogram or other means of imaging. Generally, patients will feel occasional chest pains, and often times patients won’t realize until after they have had a heart attack. Other symptoms can include:
- Chest Pains
- Lightheadedness or Dizziness
- Shortness of Breath
- Rapid Heart Rate
Risk Factors of Coronary Artery Disease
- Old age: Men over 40 & Women over 50 are more likely to suffer from CAD.
- Family history of early heart disease
- Race: Among persons with CAD, the cardiovascular death rate for African Americans is reported to be particularly high; in Asians, low levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), which are considered to be a risk factor for coronary heart disease, appear to be especially prevalent; South Asians appear to have a higher independent risk for cardiovascular disease as well.
Lifestyle Risk Factors
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Smoking cigarettes: If you stop smoking rates of acquiring CAD are greatly lowered.
- Diabetes mellitus
- Lack of physical activity
- Mental stress and depression
- Metabolic Syndrome Includes:
- High Blood Pressure
- High Sugar Levels
- And an overall combination of cardiovascular issues presenting at the same time.
Diagnosis & Treatment
Generally, in order to diagnose coronary issues patients will require imagine such as an angiogram, ultrasound, and even an MRA or Magnetic resonance angiography – Uses magnets to generate high-res images of the brain and arteries. Can identify any blockages.
Treatment methods mainly consist of self-care, and lifestyle changes, in addition to the use of prescription medication such as:
- Cholesterol Medication
- Anti-Stroke Medication
- Blood thinners
- Beta Blockers
- Calcium Channel Blockers
- And more.
Some surgical procedures can also help, like a coronary artery bypass or the implementation or a coronary stent or angioplasty. However, it is vital that patient’s lower cholesterol eith medication and lifestyle changes such as:
- Quitting Smoking
- Control High Blood Pressure
- Managing Your Weight
- Eating a heart healthy diet
- Limit your alcohol
- Get your cholesterol checked and use medication
For more information on coronary issues, and other heart ailments, or to schedule your next appointment contact us today.