Cardiovascular Diseases


It is chest pain or discomfort that occurs when the heart muscle does not get enough oxygen-rich blood, as the sufferer may feel pressure in the chest, and the pain can also occur in the shoulder, arms, neck, jaw, or back. Angina pectoris is not considered a disease, but It is a symptom of an underlying heart problem, usually coronary heart disease. Angina pectoris is not usually life-threatening but it is a warning sign that you may be at risk of having a heart attack or stroke. With treatment and healthy lifestyle changes, it is possible to control angina and reduce the risk of these most serious problems.

Types of Angina:

  • Stable angina (more common): Attacks result after a trigger (such as stress or exercise) and stop within a few minutes of rest.
  • Unstable angina (more serious): Attacks are unpredictable (may not have a trigger) and may continue despite rest. Some people develop unstable angina after having stable angina.

Angina pectoris usually occurs due to narrowing of the arteries that supply blood to the heart muscles due to accumulation of fatty substances. This is called atherosclerosis. Things that can increase the risk of atherosclerosis include:

  • Unhealthy diet
  • Lack of exercise
  • Smoking
  • Getting old
  • Family history of atherosclerosis or heart problems

Risk factors:
Angina and heart attacks are usually caused by coronary heart disease, to which the following factors contribute:

  • Family history of coronary heart disease
  • Advances in age (risk increases in men after 45 years and women after 55 years).
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Overweight or obesity
  • Smoking - you are either a smoker or you breathe in other people's smoke (passive smoking)
  • Diabetic
  • Hypertension.
  • Unhealthy cholesterol levels.
  • Postmenopausal women.

The main symptom of angina is chest pain, as different people suffer from angina in different ways, and symptoms can vary from mild to severe, as some people with angina feel chest discomfort but do not feel any pain at all, so it may be difficult to distinguish it from other chest pains (e.g.: indigestion) and chest pain caused by angina is usually:

  • A feeling of tightness or heaviness that may spread to the arms, neck, jaw, or back.
  • Caused by physical exertion or stress
  • Sometimes there may be other symptoms (such as feeling sick or short of breath).

When to see a doctor:

  • When you feel a bout of chest pain that stops within a few minutes of resting.
  • When the chest pain does not stop, even for a few minutes.

The doctor will review your symptoms and family history of heart disease, perform a physical examination, and may order some tests, including:

  • Blood tests, for cholesterol levels and other signs of heart disease.
  • Electrocardiogram (ECG). This test measures the electrical signals of the heart.
  • Stress test.

The doctor may also need to do an angiogram or other tests to look for narrowing of the arteries leading to the heart.

Treating angina reduces the frequency and severity of symptoms and reduces the risk of a heart attack by treating other underlying conditions. Treatment options for angina are:

  • Lifestyle changes to prevent angina attacks.
  • Medicines
  • Surgery, depending on the condition of the coronary arteries.

There are five simple steps to maintain a healthy heart and prevent coronary heart disease and angina pectoris, and they are:

  • Follow a heart-healthy diet and maintain a healthy weight
  • Doing physical activity.
  • Quit Smoking.
  • Control of cholesterol levels.
  • Control of blood pressure.

Living with Angina:
Angina is not a disease. You can live a long and active life with angina by managing it with medication and lifestyle changes. It is also important to control the risk of future complications (such as a heart attack).

Last Update : 24 August 2023 10:44 AM
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