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Types of coronary heart disease

 Coronary heart disease: what is it?

Coronary heart disease is one of the leading causes of death, as it is responsible for 16% of all deaths in the world. 

What is coronary heart disease?

Coronary heart disease, called coronary artery disease, is a term that refers to problems that occur when the coronary arteries are not able to deliver enough blood to the heart, which leads to serious complications, most notably sudden cardiac arrest.

In the following, we will discuss the most important information about these diseases and their complications:

Types of coronary heart disease

Types of coronary heart disease

In general, coronary heart disease occurs when fatty substances, such as cholesterol, and cellular wastes accumulate on the walls of the coronary arteries that supply the heart muscle with blood and oxygen, causing the formation of plaques on the inner lining of these arteries, and this condition is called atherosclerosis.

These plaques usually form in the arteries of the heart over many years, narrowing and hardening or blocking these arteries, thus partially or completely blocking the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart muscle.

In addition, coronary heart disease may occur as a result of some disturbances in the mechanism of the coronary arteries, which lead to their spasm and contraction, causing them to narrow and impede blood flow to the heart.

In general, there are three types of coronary heart disease, which are as follows:

1. Obstructive coronary artery disease

In this type of coronary heart disease, more than 50% or complete blockage occurs in the large coronary arteries located on the surface of the heart muscle.

2. Non-obstructive coronary artery disease

In this type, narrowing of the large coronary arteries may occur due to the formation of plaques.

3. Coronary microvascular disease

As for this type, the disease may develop by the formation of small plaques in the small blood vessels found in the tissues of the heart muscle.

Coronary heart disease symptoms

The appearance of coronary heart disease symptoms and signs may depend on the severity of the disease and the extent of coronary artery blockage, and may include the following:

1. Angina

Angina pectoris arises in the event of a partial blockage in the coronary heart arteries, and its symptoms include the following:

Chest pain (may be mild or severe).

Feeling of heaviness or pressure in the middle of the chest.

hard breathing.

Severe pain that spreads to the neck, arms, jaw, and back, usually in severe cases.

An angina attack often occurs as a result of emotional or physical stress, and symptoms may resolve within a few minutes after stopping strenuous activities.

2. Heart attack

A heart attack occurs if the coronary arteries are completely blocked, causing temporary or permanent damage to the heart muscle, and this condition can be fatal if not treated quickly.

Usually, the symptoms of a heart attack are similar to severe angina, but it may be more severe, in addition to feeling some other symptoms, which include the following:

Feeling too much pressure in the chest.

sweating;

nausea;

Upset stomach and heartburn.

general fatigue;

Dizziness or fainting.

A heart attack can occur while you're at rest, and sometimes it can develop without any significant signs or symptoms.

Factors that increase the risk of coronary heart disease

The factors that increase the risk of coronary heart disease are as follows:

Hypertension.

High levels of bad cholesterol in the blood.

Low level of good cholesterol in the blood.

diabetes.

obesity;

smoking.

Infection of a family member with these diseases.

Postmenopausal women.

Men over 45 years of age.

Complications of coronary heart disease

Coronary heart disease is a critical health problem that may cause many serious complications that may lead to disability or death. Among these complications are the most important:

1. Arrhythmia

Damage to the heart muscle or a lack of blood supply to it may cause an imbalance in the electrical signals of the heart, causing arrhythmias.

2. Acute coronary syndrome

The acute coronary syndrome may cause the following conditions: acute angina attack and acute heart attack.

3. Heart failure

Chronically insufficient access to oxygen and nutrients to the heart muscle may cause weakness or damage to some of its parts, which leads to heart failure or its inability to pump enough blood to meet the needs of the body.

4. Cardiogenic Shock

Coronary artery disease can result in an emergency called cardiogenic shock, a life-threatening condition that occurs when the heart is unable to pump enough blood and oxygen to vital organs, such as the brain and kidneys.

5. Sudden Cardiac Arrest

We previously mentioned that coronary heart disease can cause electrical disturbances in the heart, and this may lead to a condition in which the heartbeat stops suddenly, causing no blood flow to the brain, which in turn leads to death within a few minutes if not treated quickly.

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