Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a type of cardiovascular disease that affects the arteries in your heart. It is one of the leading causes of death for both men and women in the United States, and it can lead to heart attack, stroke, or other cardiovascular diseases. This article will provide an overview of coronary artery disease, including its symptoms, treatments, and prevention methods.
Causes of CAD ( Coronary Artery Disease)
The primary cause of CAD is atherosclerosis—the buildup of fatty deposits on the walls of your arteries. When these deposits build up, they narrow the arteries carrying blood to your heart, making it harder for blood to flow through them. This narrowing can eventually lead to CAD. Other factors that may increase your risk of developing CAD include smoking, high blood pressure or cholesterol levels, diabetes, obesity, lack of physical activity or exercise, age (especially over 45 for men and over 55 for women), and family history.
Symptoms & Diagnosis
Early diagnosis is important when it comes to treating CAD as it can help prevent further complications from occurring. Common signs and symptoms include chest pain (angina), shortness of breath during physical activity or at rest, fatigue due to reduced oxygen supply to your heart muscle, irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia), heart palpitations or skipped beats (atrial fibrillation), and feeling lightheaded or dizzy due to low blood pressure caused by reduced blood flow. Your doctor may recommend tests such as an electrocardiogram (ECG) or echocardiogram (ECHO) if they suspect you may be suffering from CAD.
Treatment & Prevention
Treatment options vary depending on the severity and extent of the disease. Medications such as aspirin may be prescribed to reduce inflammation in your arteries and prevent further blockages from forming; other medications such as statins or beta-blockers can also be used to lower cholesterol levels and reduce stress on your heart muscle.
If medications are not successful in improving symptoms then surgery may be recommended; this could involve inserting a stent into an affected artery or bypassing a blocked artery with a graft from another part of the body. Regular exercise is also key for preventing coronary artery disease as it helps keep your weight down and lowers cholesterol levels; eating a healthy diet low in saturated fat also helps reduce your risk of developing CAD.
Coronary artery disease is a serious condition that needs to be taken seriously if you want to avoid potentially life-threatening complications such as heart attack or stroke.
Early diagnosis is key so make sure you speak with your doctor if you experience any signs or symptoms associated with CAD; they will be able to advise you on treatment options available that best suit your individual needs. Regular exercise combined with healthy eating can also help prevent the onset of any cardiovascular diseases so make sure you make lifestyle changes where necessary!