Coronary Heart Disease

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  • Coronary Heart Disease
    • Symptoms
      • angina (chest pain)
      • heart attack
    • Causes
      • coronary arteries become narrowed due to a build up of fatty deposits (plaques), known as ATHEROSCLEROSIS
        • causes a reduction in oxygenated blood flowing to the heart muscle
      • DIET
        • high levels of salt and sat fat = deposit cholesterol in arteries and development of hypertension
        • increase in body weight puts a strain in the cardio-vascular system
      • ALCOHOL
        • it's a toxin, and too much can damage the heart
      • SMOKING
        • nicotine and carbon monoxide put a strain on the heart, and increases the risk of blood clots
      • GENETICS
        • CAD can be caused by a single gene defect = increase risk
      • LIFESTYLE
        • stress has been linked to CAD and an increase in hypertension
        • lack of exercise, high blood pressure
    • Diagnosis
      • ANGIOGRAM
        • observe the structure and function of the heart  and identify if the coronary arteries are narrowed or blocked
        • a dye is injected into the blood to locate sites of blockage
      • CARDIAC ULTRASOUND
        • produces an image of the heart and identifies the structure and function of the heart, the thickness of the heart muscle and valve movements
      • BLOOD PRESSURE TEST
        • way of checking for hypertension
      • ECG
        • records the rhythm and electrical activity of the heart, and records any abnormalities
    • Treatment
      • LIFESTYLE CHANGES
        • stop smoking
        • eat healthily
        • regular exercise
      • MEDICATION
        • Antiplatelets
          • thin blood and prevent it clotting
        • Statins
          • cholesterol-lowering medicine, by blocking the formation of cholesterol and increasing LDL receptors in liver
        • Beta-Blockers
          • slow the heart rate, lower blood pressure and prevent angina
        • Nitrates
          • relaxes the blood vessels and widens them; lowers blood  pressure and relieves heart pain
        • Diuretics
          • flush excess water and salt from the body through urine
      • ANGIOPLASTY
        • a small balloon is inserted into the narrowed artery and inflated to widen the artery and let blood flow through more easily
        • if a STENT is used, it is inserted with the balloon and when the balloon is deflated and removed, the stent says in place, holding the artery open
      • HEART TRANSPLANT
        • involves replacing a heart that is not functioning properly with a healthy donor heart
      • CORONARY ARTERY BYPASS GRAFT
        • involves re-routing the blood flow around the blocked part of the artery
        • blood vessel is grafted between the aorta and the blocked part of the CA
      • PACEMAKER
        • a small, electronic device which sends electrical impulses to the heart to maintain the correct pace of the heart
    • Lifestyle Effects
      • increased time off work
      • frustration, depression, anxiety, fear
      • frequent medical appointments
      • side effects from medication
      • painful surgery and procedures
      • strain on social relationships

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