Ischemic heart disease is a condition in which one experiences recurring chest pain or discomfort. This often occurs when a part of the heart does not receive enough blood. Rashi has always been interested in learning more about ischemic heart disease. But she never really got a chance because of her busy schedule.
Today, Rashi wants to change that and we are going to help her do it. If you have also wanted to learn about ischemic heart diseases, then stick around and go through everything that we have mentioned below.
What is Ischemic Heart Disease?
As mentioned above, ischemic heart disease is a medical condition in which one suffers from recurring chest pain or discomfort. This problem occurs when a part of the heart does not receive enough blood.
It is common for this condition to occur during excitement, exertion, or when the heart requires a larger amount of blood flow. Ischemic heart disease is also known as coronary heart disease. It is the leading cause of death all across the world.
You might find it interesting to note that ischemic heart diseases develop when different cholesterol particles in the blood start to accumulate on the walls of the arteries. These arteries transfer blood to the heart.
With time, these deposits turn to plaque. The plaque deposits narrow the arteries and eventually block the flow of blood. This decrease in blood flow further means that a reduced amount of oxygen will be supplied to the heart muscle.
Rashi has also heard that the signs and symptoms of ischemic heart disease develop slowly over time as the arteries become blocked. She is wondering if that is the rule. Rashi should know that this is not always the case. Arteries can become blocked very quickly.
There are also some people who suffer from ischemic heart disease and they have no symptoms at all. On the other hand, other individuals suffer from severe chest pain or angina and shortness of breath. This poses a great risk of a heart attack.
The good thing that should be put into focus here is that ischemic heart diseases can be treated successfully with lifestyle changes, surgical procedures, and medicines. People can further reduce the risk of acquiring these diseases by following some heart-healthy practices. Some of these practices are:
- Consuming low-fat items
- Being on a low-sodium diet
- Should be physically active
- Avoid smoking
- Maintain a healthy body weight
Beyond this, one must remember that if left untreated, ischemic heart disease can lead to severe heart damage. Heart damage can result in heart attack and shock. This can be life-threatening. This is why immediate medical treatment should be sought in case of an emergency.
The Symptoms of Ischemic Heart Disease
There are some common symptoms of ischemic heart disease. These symptoms are:
- Chest pain
- Chest pressure
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain that spreads to the arms, back, or other areas
- It may feel like indigestion
- Clammy skin
- Nausea with or without vomiting
- Pain in the neck or jaw
- Rapid breathing
- Shortness of breath
- Shoulder or arm pain
It should be noted that it is not compulsory for everybody to experience all of these symptoms. One might experience these symptoms and the other person might not experience any other symptom at all.
Causes and Risk Factors of Ischemic Heart Disease
Ischemic heart disease is caused by a decrease in blood flow through one or more blood vessels that carry oxygen to the heart. When this blood flow is reduced, the amount of oxygen that is reaching the heart is reduced. This hampers the functioning of the heart.
There are also some risk factors that put an individual at a higher risk of suffering from ischemic heart disease. Some of these risk factors are:
- Family history of heart disease
- High blood pressure
- High blood cholesterol
- Tobacco use
- Physical inactivity
Reducing the Risk of Ischemic Heart Disease
To reduce the risk of ischemic heart disease, one can follow the given tips.
- Carefully manage your diabetes
- Getting regular physical activity
- Keeping your cholesterol at a healthy level
- Maintaining a normal blood pressure
- Quit smoking
- Quit tobacco use
- Reduce the amount of cholesterol and fat in your diet
Treatment of Ischemic Heart Disease
The treatment of ischemic heart disease begins by seeking help from a medical expert. The medical expert will ask the patient to undergo several diagnostic tests. On the basis of that, medications are given to the patient.
Rashi wants to learn about the drug therapy treatment of ischemic heart disease. Let’s help her with that by going through the list of medications which are mentioned below.
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors relax the blood vessels and lower the blood pressure
- Angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) lowers the blood pressure
- Antiplatelet drugs prevent the formation of blood clots
- Beta-blockers that lower the heart rate
- Anti-ischemic agents like ranolazine
- Calcium channel blockers that will reduce the workload on the heart muscle
- Nitrates that dilate the blood vessels
- Statins that lower cholesterol
Apart from all this, surgical methods are also used for treating ischemic heart diseases. These procedures include angioplasty, stent placement, and coronary artery bypass graft.
There are hundreds of patients who go under the treatment for ischemic heart disease. And most of them have very smooth treatment plans and recovery processes. However, there are some possible complications that can occur due to ischemic heart disease. These complications are:
- Arrhythmia or irregular heart rhythm
- Chronic angina
- Congestive heart failure
- Heart damage
- Myocardial infarction or heart attack
Rashi has really enjoyed learning about ischemic heart diseases today. Did you enjoy learning about ischemic heart diseases too today?