Wondering why people consider coronary artery disease the major type of heart disease? This condition can lead to angina and heart attack, so get diagnosed on time by the reputed cardiovascular center like Peak Heart & Vascular Cardiologist in Surprise, AZ.
What is coronary artery disease?
Coronary arteries that carry blood from your heart carry oxygen-rich blood throughout your body and back again. When there’s a problem with this system – even if you’re only mildly affected by it – it can cause chest pain and shortness of breath due to a lack of oxygen getting to your lungs.
Coronary artery disease is caused by changes in your arteries that narrow the lumen (the passage way through which blood flows). The 3 types of coronary artery disease include:
- Atherosclerosis – this occurs when fatty material collects on the inside walls of your arteries, causing them to narrow over time. This can result in a heart attack or angina because it prevents oxygen-rich blood from reaching parts of your body where it’s needed most.
- Hypertension – high blood pressure causes increased tension on all vessels within the body, including those supplying blood into your heart muscle itself; this increases stress on those vessels and makes them more likely to rupture (rupture means they split open).
Coronary artery disease is a progressive condition that results in the hardening and narrowing of blood vessels. The most common type of coronary artery disease is atherosclerosis, which is caused by cholesterol deposits in the blood vessels. Cholesterol deposits made up of lipids (fats), proteins, and minerals build up over time if you have high levels of LDL cholesterol or triglycerides, which are fats found in your body’s cells; or if you don’t get enough exercise or eat a healthy diet.
Atherosclerosis develops as a result of excessive buildup on your arteries—the main supply pathway for oxygenated blood to flow through them—which narrows them until they can no longer accommodate an adequate amount of blood flow needed for normal functions like breathing properly when we inhale air into our lungs from outside air sources like trees around us while walking outside our homes where there might be much less pollution than inside buildings filled with people working hard at jobs where they wear their uniforms every day instead
The symptoms of coronary artery disease can be difficult to identify because they’re similar to those of other conditions. However, if you experience any of these signs or symptoms, it’s important to see your doctor:
- Chest pain or discomfort that lasts more than a few minutes
- Shortness of breath
- Nausea or vomiting (especially when standing up)
- Dizziness that persists even after sitting down again
If you have any questions about your symptoms and want to talk with someone about them further, connect with the Peak Heart & Vascular Cardiologist in Surprise, AZ for help.
- A physical exam and blood tests are used to diagnose coronary artery disease.
- Cardiologists can use ultrasound to help diagnose the condition. The cardiologist examines your heart by placing a tiny probe on your chest wall, which makes it possible for them to see internal structures or arteries that may be blocked or narrowed by plaque buildup.
- After reviewing your results from an electrocardiogram (EKG), a cardiac stress test may also be recommended if you have symptoms of heart disease such as chest pain or shortness of breath when you exercise but don’t have any other obvious causes for these symptoms in addition to CAD
Treatment for coronary artery disease includes medications, lifestyle changes, and surgery.
- Medication is used to control blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which may reduce the risk of heart attacks. There are two types of medications: angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and beta blockers (also called beta-blockers). ACEIs help opens up clogged arteries by blocking substances that cause them to narrow down; beta-blockers prevent cardiac muscle from contracting too much during exercise or stress. Both drugs can be taken orally or injected into a vein once a day at bedtime with food. The dose should be increased if needed until improvement occurs or until side effects appear—usually within four weeks—and then tapered down slowly over time so that you don’t develop tolerance to the medication
Getting coronary artery disease diagnosed early is the key to preventing serious damage to the heart, including death.
Early detection is critical. The sooner you get treatment, the better your chances of a full recovery. If you have a family history of heart disease or other risk factors, such as high blood pressure and smoking, it’s important to schedule regular tests at least once every few years by Peak Heart & Vascular Cardiologist in Surprise, AZ
Although coronary artery disease is very dangerous that can lead to death, the good news is it’s easy to prevent or treat with regular exercise and healthy lifestyle habits, including quitting smoking. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with coronary artery disease, talk to your Cardiologist in Surprise, AZ about treatment options and get it fixed as early as possible.