Cardiovascular Diseases


Arteries are the blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood to the heart and other parts of the body. The term (atherosclerosis) is applied to the accumulation and buildup of oxidized fatty and fatty substances on the walls of the arteries, limiting the blood flow to the organs of the body. Atherosclerosis can affect any artery in the body, including the arteries in the heart, brain, arms, legs, pelvis, and kidneys. When this happens, various diseases may result, including:

  • Coronary heart disease.
  • Heart attack.
  • Carotid artery disease.
  • Peripheral artery disease.
  • Chronic kidney disease.

It also leads to serious problems or even death.

It occurs due to the accumulation of deposits of fat, cholesterol, and other substances in the blood on the walls of the arteries. The exact cause of atherosclerosis is unknown, as studies show that it is a slow, complex disease that may begin in childhood and progress faster with age.

Symptoms often do not appear in the early stages of atherosclerosis. Symptoms may first appear when experiencing physical or emotional stress (times when the body needs more oxygen). Symptoms depend on which arteries are affected and how much blood flow is blocked:
In the heart: chest pain (angina), cold sweat, dizziness, extreme tiredness, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, nausea and weakness.

  • In the legs: Pain, soreness, heaviness, or cramping in the legs when walking or climbing stairs is one of the main symptoms of peripheral artery disease, and it disappears after rest.
  • In the arteries leading to the brain: problems with thinking and memory, weakness or numbness on one side of the body or face, and vision problems.
  • In the arteries leading to the kidneys: may cause high blood pressure or kidney failure.
  • In arteries supplying the intestine: severe pain after meals, weight loss, and diarrhea.

Other symptoms may not be noticed until plaque buildup causes serious problems, so it is important to see a doctor regularly.

Risk factors:

  • Getting old.
  • Family history of hereditary cholesterol disorder.
  • High levels of cholesterol in the blood.
  • Lack of physical activity.
  • Unhealthy diet.
  • Hypertension.
  • Diabetic.
  • Overweight or obesity.
  • Smoking.

Complications of atherosclerosis may occur suddenly without warning signs. Some conditions may result, such as:

  • Heart problems.
  • Stroke
  • Damage to organs
  • Chronic kidney disease.
  • Death.

The main treatment for atherosclerosis is to change to a healthy lifestyle by the following:

  • Maintain regular physical activity, the simplest of which is walking for 30 minutes, three days a week.
  • Follow a healthy diet to reduce fat and harmful cholesterol and increase the amount of fiber, grains, fruits and vegetables.
  • Medicines if results of the full lipid profile are high and are prescribed by the doctor.
  • Treating the health conditions of some medical conditions that increase the risk of plaque buildup and complications of atherosclerosis.


  • Adopt healthy eating habits, such as cooking meals that are low in sodium and unhealthy fats.
  • Doing physical activity (e.g.: brisk walking for 30 minutes) every day.
  • Take medications as prescribed and keep medical appointments.
  • Take a rest and sleep at least 7-8 hours a night.
  • Control of stress.
  • Try to reach and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Quit smoking of all kinds, and avoid passive smoking.

Instructions for people with atherosclerosis:

  • Follow the treatment plan and take all medications regularly as prescribed by the doctor.
  • Consult your doctor when changing the amount of medication or skipping a dose.
  • Ask your doctor about medications, nutritional supplements, or foods to avoid.
  • Talk to your doctor when planning pregnancy or breastfeeding.
  • Ensure that blood cholesterol levels are at a healthy level.
  • Doing a diabetes analysis to monitor its levels in the blood.
  • Do regular blood pressure checks to make sure it is in the healthy range.

Last Update : 24 August 2023 12:00 PM
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