Artery Disease ( Atherosclerosis )

Artery Disease - also known as arteriosclerosis or under the medical term atherosclerosis - is an insidious disease process of fat accumulation in the inner lining of arteries. Because the vessel wall and then is getting thicker, the arteries become narrowed and the flow rate slowly hindered. The tissue gets downstream thereby less oxygen-rich blood. A danger in the short term is that the weakened artery wall ruptures, leading to blood clots that can connect an artery completely.

In the beginning, people do not notice artery disease. Only over time can lead to artery disease include chest pain, a heart attack or stroke. All in all, the effects of arterial disease is responsible for more than one third of the deaths in the Netherlands.

Artery disease is a lifestyle disease which is strongly dependent of the risk factors, such as the content of LDL-cholesterol, high blood pressure and smoking.


Artery Disease is commonly referred to as arteriosclerosis, but that term is for two reasons not the best description of the disease.

1 In the first place, it is not veins, but to arteries. Veins and arteries have a different role in the circulatory system. The veins carry deoxygenated blood back to the heart. Arteries carry oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the tissues and organs. A deviation of a vein usually has no serious consequences (eg varicose veins), but a closed artery does, especially when it comes to the coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle. A blockage in a coronary artery leads to a heart attack.

2 In the second place, it is not the most serious consequence of calcification artery disease. The disease is especially dangerous if the fat accumulation is still fresh, because the weakened wall can rupture with a heart attack or stroke as a result. The calcification of the artery wall appears to be just slightly protection against this tearing apart to offer.


The medical name for artery disease is atherosclerosis. The prefix 'athero' comes from the Greek athere, meaning gruel or porridge. The second part, 'sclerosis' means tissue hardening. Atherosclerosis is the build-up of a soft papachtige slurry in the arterial wall so that the elasticity of the wall is reduced. LDL cholesterol is an important part of this soft mush.

Artery Disease starts with streakiness

Artery Disease starts with fatty deposits, called fatty streaks, or streakiness. These are usually found in places where an artery branches. Probably little turbulence in the blood flow in these places the reason that the fat right attaches.

Not everyone gets streakiness. If people suddenly die in a traffic accident, they sometimes turn out well and have. Sometimes not streakiness in their arteries Even in children, they are found. Why does one have streakiness and the other not? Even the best researchers have not (yet) good answer to this question.

Plaque = fat accumulation in arterial wall

The streakiness form a good bonding surface for LDL cholesterol that is supplied through the blood. So a fat running plate can become a buildup of cholesterol and other substances under the thin lining of an artery. Such fat accumulation is called a plaque. Streakiness are not dangerous in itself, but it plaques. Not every fat running plate develops into a plaque and here's the big question why it sometimes will happen and other times not. What is clear is that you reduce the risk by curbing risk factors.

 also known as arteriosclerosis or under the medical term atherosclerosis  Artery Disease ( ATHEROSCLEROSIS )

The plaques passage of an artery can be considerably narrower, but that's in the beginning no complaints. It is only when the diameter of the passageway with been reduced by half, or in other words, 50 percent or more is narrowed, problems arise. The artery is narrowed 70 percent, then that is often noticeable on exertion, by a typical chest pain that angina is called. With a narrowing of 90 percent can also arise in rest pain on the chest.

Closing remarks by blood clot

By fat accumulation in the arterial wall, the passage of the blood can be increasingly hindered, but it is not often that an artery in this way can pass through. No more blood If that happens, the consequences can be very serious: a heart attack or stroke.

Typically, an artery is closed by a different mechanism: a blood clot which is produced on an open ruptured plaque. The crack can be seen as an open wound, the blood is trying to close a clotting reaction. The result is a blood clot that can close off the artery. This can be done at the site of the crack itself or further downstream, when the blood clot breaks loose and enters the bloodstream.

What can a doctor do?

Artery Disease is a chronic disease. A doctor can combat the effects of arterial disease, but the disease process can not usually be reversed.

Medications such as antihypertensives, cholesterol and clotting-inflammatory drugs have the risk of heart attack or stroke significantly down.

If medications do not help, and a heart attack is imminent, a doctor can balloon angioplasty to clear. Narrowing of the coronary arteries His coronary arteries narrowed in many places, then a bypass surgery can provide perspective.


The consequences of arterial disease can be severe. Chest pain is for the rest of life is a limit of one range. After a heart attack or stroke, life will never be quite the same, despite the impressive medical technology.

What can you do yourself?

That the best doctor is yourself, because prevention is better than cure. By limiting the risk factors, the risk of arterial disease rapidly smaller. Some risk factors such as age, gender and heredity have unfortunately not in the hand. But other risk factors you can do a lot!

People eating giant

In her book about artery disease, the American cardiologist Elizabeth Klodas tells of a hospital on the river. The story goes like this.

A few doctors walking along a river and see a wounded man in the water. The man is short of breath and has a lot of pain, so the doctors pull the man from the water and do what they can.

Then they see two others wounded in the water. And further drive five more. The doctors try to get everyone out of the water but they can not go and get help. More and more doctors come to help, while the influx of wounded is only increasing. A hospital built next to the river, where ever better methods are devised to treat the sick. Besides the hospital rises a medicine factory and settle companies that support the hospital at the riverside.

The doctors are happy with every life that they know how to save, but they do not come up with the idea to investigate where the injuries come from. Upstream they would have encountered a huge ogre who prey regular half gnawed throw in the river. This giant is a personification of artery disease. Elizabeth Klodas calls her book martial Slay the Giant (Giant Slaughter!).

But doctors will be able to defeat the giant. Never quite It is better to make sure you do not fall into his hands. An important contribution in the fight against artery disease is to be expected from people who know the risk factors in their lifestyle to reduce.

Iklan Atas Artikel

Iklan Tengah Artikel 1

Iklan Tengah Artikel 2

Iklan Bawah Artikel