Washington Evening Journal
https://washington-ia.villagesoup.com/p/1663182

Fairfield Ledger   Mt. Pleasant News
Neighbors Growing Together | Aug 22, 2017

Be heart-healthy: Know the trouble signs

Jun 21, 2017

What is Heart

Disease?

Coronary heart disease—often simply called heart disease—is the main form of heart disease.

It is a disorder of the blood vessels of the heart that can lead to heart attack. A heart attack happens when an artery becomes blocked, preventing oxygen and nutrients from getting to the heart.

Heart disease is one of several cardiovascular diseases, which are diseases of the heart and blood vessel system.

Other cardiovascular diseases include stroke, high blood pressure, angina (chest pain), and rheumatic heart disease.

One reason some women aren’t too concerned about heart disease is that they think it can be “cured” with surgery or medication.

This is a myth. Heart disease is a lifelong condition—once you get it, you’ll always have it.

True, procedures such as bypass surgery and percutaneous coronary intervention can help blood and oxygen flow to the heart more easily.

But the arteries remain damaged, which means you are more likely to have a heart attack. What’s more, the condition of your blood vessels will steadily worsen unless you make changes in your daily habits.

Many women die of complications from heart disease, or become permanently disabled. That’s why it is so vital to take action to prevent and control this disease.

Coronary heart disease (CHD) is a disease in which a waxy substance called plaque builds up inside the coronary arteries. These arteries supply oxygen-rich blood to your heart muscle.

When plaque builds up in the arteries, the condition is called atherosclerosis. The buildup of plaque occurs over many years.

Over time, plaque can harden or rupture (break open). Hardened plaque narrows the coronary arteries and reduces the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart.

If the plaque ruptures, a blood clot can form on its surface.

A large blood clot can mostly or completely block blood flow through a coronary artery. Over time, ruptured plaque also hardens and narrows the coronary arteries.

Overview

If the flow of oxygen-rich blood to your heart muscle is reduced or blocked, angina or a heart attack can occur.

Angina is chest pain or discomfort. It may feel like pressure or squeezing in your chest.

The pain also can occur in your shoulders, arms, neck, jaw, or back. Angina pain may even feel like indigestion.

A heart attack occurs if the flow of oxygen-rich blood to a section of heart muscle is cut off. If blood flow isn’t restored quickly, the section of heart muscle begins to die.

Without quick treatment, a heart attack can lead to serious health problems or death.

Over time, CHD can weaken the heart muscle and lead to heart failure and arrhythmias.

Heart failure is a condition in which your heart can’t pump enough blood to meet your body’s needs. Arrhythmias are problems with the rate or rhythm of the heartbeat.

Lifestyle changes, medicines, and medical procedures can help prevent or treat coronary heart disease. These treatments may reduce the risk of related health problems.

 

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.