Most cardiovascular Disease stars with Atheroma Formation
1. Wall of artery is made up of several layers
2. Endothelium (inner lining) is usually smooth and unbroken.
3. Damage occurs to the endothelium by high blood pressure, white blood cells and lipids from the blood clump together under the lining to for fatty streaks.
4. Over time, white blood cells, lipids and connective tissue build up and harden to form fibrous plaque called an Atheroma.
5. Plaque blocks lumen of the artery and restricts blood flow which causes blood pressure to increase.
Atheromas Increase the risk of Aneurysm and Thrombosis (affecting the arteries):
· Aneurysm – a balloon like swelling of the artery
1. Plaque damage and weaken arteries. Also narrow arteries, increasing blood pressure.
2. When blood travels through a weakened artery at high pressure may push the inner layers of artery through the outer elastic layer to form a balloon like swelling – an aneurysm.
3. May burst causing a haemorrhage (bleeding).
· Thrombosis – formation of a blood clot
1. Atheroma plaque can rupture (burst through) endothelium (inner lining) of an artery.
2. Damages the artery wall and leaves a rough surface