Ischaemic Heart Disease is more commonly known as “Coronary Artery Disease”which is a medical condition that affects the blood supply to the heart. Basically blood vessels get blocked or narrowed due to cholesterol plaque which collects on the vessel walls. This plaque then reduces the oxygen supply and nutrients to the heart muscle. This may result in some of the heart being deprived of its blood supply which then leads to the death of that area of heart tissue, thereby resulting in a “Myocardial Infarction”.
Causes of Ischaemic or Coronary Heart Disease
There are several factors which are responsible for the development of “Coronary Heart Disease”. The risk factors are smoking, diabetes and high cholesterol levels. Some medical studies have also suggested that hypertension is a factor in the development of Coronary Heart Disease. There is also a genetic and hereditary factor for Coronary Heart Disease. Men are at higher risk for Ischaemic or Coronary Heart Disease. Not to mention post-menopausal women are of high risk for Coronary Heart Disease which they are almost the same as men. Stress has also been thought to be a risk factor in Ischaemic Heart Disease, although there has been a lot of discussion on that issue.
Risk factors like a diet rich in fat, smoking and stress should be avoided by everyone however especially if you have any hereditary or genetic risk factors. Regular exercise is also essential in Coronary Artery Disease prevention. Not to mention diabetes and hypertension should be kept under control with proper medical treatment.
Signs and Symptoms of Coronary or Ischaemic Heart Disease
Usually the first sign of Coronary Heart Disease is severe chest pain as in a heart attack, which may be life threatening. Warning symptoms occur in many patients in the form of a medical condition known as “Angina”. The symptom of “Angina” is pain in the chest that sometimes radiates down the left arm, or to the back or jaw. The pain is usually aggravated by exertion and usually relieved by rest, although sometimes other forms may happen. The pain may also be relieved by the use of Nitroglycerin under the tongue. The pain is usually stated as feeling like a sense of tightness in the middle of the chest or compression and may last for up to twenty minutes. The pain may also be accompanied by profuse sweating.
If you have any signs or symptoms which make you think you may be at risk for Coronary Heart Disease you should contact a medical professional and have a complete medical evaluation done. If you have the medical condition “Angina” you should be evaluated often for Coronary or Ischaemic Heart Disease.
References for this article include WebMD.com, Americanheart.org and Mayoclinic.com