A chest pain
or discomfort that occurs when an area of the heart is deprived of oxygen. It is typically described as a crushing or squeezing
sensation in the chest and sometimes might feel like heartburn. It may also radiate to the jaw, shoulders, arm or back. It
is usually a symptom of underlying heart disease, such as coronary artery disease.
Types of Angina:
There are three distinct types of angina: stable
angina, unstable angina and variant (prinzmetal's) angina.
The most common form of angina occurs when the heart is working harder
than usual. A person can predict when it may happen, for example, during certain activities. It is usually relieved with rest
or with angina medications such as nitrates (nitro).
Unstable angina, unlike stable angina does not follow a predictable pattern. It can happen during strenuous activity
or at rest and isn't always relieved with rest and medication such as nitrates (nitro). It is a serious condition and may
be indicative of an impeding heart attack.
This form of angina is the rarest and usually occurs at rest during sleeping hours. It may lead to a
heart attach while a person is sleeping.
At least 250,000 people die each year of heart attack within one hour of the
onset of symptoms.
Arterial Plaque Buildup:
Arteries are the part of the human
circulatory system through which blood carries oxygen and other nutrients throughout the body. Most arteries carry oxygenated
blood away from the heart to every system of the body. The interior of arteries is normally smooth and unobstructed, but as
a person ages, a sticky substance commonly called plaque can develop and build up on the interior walls. The presence of artery
plaque to some degree is almost universal in adults, especially older adults, but excessive buildup results from damaged arterial
walls, due to factors such as poor diet and smoking.
Apart from blocking blood flow in vital arteries, small pieces of
artery plaque can sometimes become dislodged. If these pieces become lodged in the brain or heart, they can cause a person
to suffer from heart attack or stroke.
Arteriosclerosis (hardening or the arteties):
Refers to several
diseases in which the arterial wall thickens and loses its elasticity. The most common sites for arteriosclerosis are arteries
in the brain, kidneys, heart, abdominal aorta, or legs. Symptoms of arteriosclerosis vary according to which arteries are
affected. Leg pain when exercising might indicate peripheral arterial disease. Sudden weakness or dizziness could be caused
by an obstruction in the carotid artery in the neck, which produces stroke-like symptoms. Chest pain or symptoms of a heart
attack might indicate obstruction of the coronary arteries.
Arteriosclerosis can also cause erectile dysfunction. Decreased
blood pressure in a limb or lack of a pulse in a narrowed artery could indicate arteriosclerosis. Other warning signs include
a bulge in the abdomen or behind the knee.
Atherosclerosis is the medical term used to describe hardening of the arteries. A condition that develops
in many people, atherosclerosis occurs when plaque begins to build up on the arterial walls of the body. Atherosclerosis is
a progressive condition that often does not present itself for diagnosis until it affects the health of the body
is the leading cause of heart attacks and heart disease. It can also cause strokes and can potentially be fatal over time.
Essentially, the plaque build-up on the arterial walls becomes so significant that it begins to block the flow of blood. When
vital organs, such as the heart or lungs, are deprived of oxygen rich blood, atherosclerosis becomes a life-threatening condition.
Other complications of atherosclerosis are detachment of plaque build up and blood clots that travel and become lodged elsewhere
in the body.
Atherosclerosis is not typically diagnosed without other symptoms presenting as a result of a severely blocked
or narrowed artery. Chest pain, heart attack, or stroke can be a result of atherosclerosis, though the condition may not have
been previously detected.
Blood clots are not a normal condition, but occur when blood coagulates,
or hardens. These form during injury to the body. A thrombus, or blood clot, is made when blood cells lump together with fibrin,
a stretchy, thread-like protein. Research has shown fibrin to be a strong material that can absorb blood from cuts to help
heal them, but is also responsible for making blood clots hard to break down. Medications are now available to help destroy
blood clots by working to break up the fibrin. Blood clots can also cause destruction of the body's tissue.
are small buildups of calcium which can occur anywhere in the body and are extremely dangerous when they build up in the arteries
of the heart. They are especially common in the shoulder. These formations start out small and soft, growing and hardening
slowly over time. People often notice calcium deposits because they grow large and hard enough to be felt through the skin,
or because they put stress on surrounding tendons and muscles. The area around the calcification may also become inflamed
as a result of irritation, causing the region to feel hot and sore. A large calcium deposit can restrict freedom of movement
by making it hard for someone to move a tendon or muscle comfortably.
Occasionally, calcium deposits develop in places
which could be potentially dangerous or problematic. These deposits may interfere with the function of the body, or cause
permanent damage as a result of straining or damaging surrounding soft tissue. Women appear to be more at risk for calcium
deposits, and they are commonly associated with osteoporosis and aging.
Cardiovascular disease is a general term encompassing
meanings for various ailments of the heart and the blood vessels surrounding the heart. Most types of cardiovascular disease
deal with the hardening and clotting of arteries. This can lead to heart attacks and strokes in their most serious form. Both
conditions are capable of resulting in death.
In fact, cardiovascular disease accounts for the most deaths throughout
the world. In the United States alone, it accounts for 40 percent of all deaths. When most people think of cardiovascular
disease, clogged arteries come to mind. Cholesterol gets caught along the artery walls and begins to build up over time. Eventually,
it can cut the blood flow off to the heart significantly enough that it causes a heart attack.
Carotid Artery Disease:
Carotid artery disease,
also known as carotid artery stenosis, occurs when the carotid arteries become narrowed or obstructed. This is usually due
to atherosclerosis, or the build-up of plaque in the blood vessel. Plaque is a substance, usually hard on the outside and
soft on the inside, which is composed of fatty material, cholesterol, calcium, and cellular waste products. Carotid artery
disease can cause a stroke.
The carotid arteries are paired blood vessels that take oxygenated blood from the heart to
the frontal brain tissue. The right common carotid arteries branches from the brachiocephalic trunk in the neck extends up
the right side of the neck and the left common carotid artery originates at the aortic arch in the thorax, or chest, and extends
up the left side of the neck.
Several factors can put a patient more at risk for developing carotid artery disease. High
blood pressure, age, obesity, diabetes, smoking, high content of “bad” cholesterol or low content of “good”
cholesterol, high saturated fat diet, lack of exercise, and family history of carotid artery disease can all increase a patient’s
risk. The most serious complication of the disease is a stroke, or the loss of brain function due to impaired blood flow to
Normally, the carotid arteries are elastic and allow blood to pass freely, but as carotid artery disease
advances and plaque builds along the walls of the artery, the vessel hardens and narrows. This on its own can cause a stroke
if the atherosclerosis becomes so advanced that vessels are extremely narrowed and the brain can no longer get enough blood
Cholesterol is a substance in the human body that is needed for building and regulating cells.
Most people are familiar with the term, however, because of the fear of 'high cholesterol' and indeed, too much of the wrong
kind of cholesterol is actively bad for you. Cholesterol can be ingested in the food we eat, but most of your body's store
is made in the liver and other organs and circulates in the bloodstream, where it does its work.
There are actually
two types of cholesterol, only one of which is bad for you - Low-Density Lipoproteins (LDL), frequently referred to as 'bad
cholesterol'. LDL is the substance that carries the building materials around the body to wherever they is needed. If you
have too much LDL, it can line the artery walls in your bloodstream, forming 'plaque' and making your arteries narrower and
less efficient at moving blood around. Plaque on the artery walls can, if left untreated, lead to a heart attack or stroke
if it interferes with blood flow to the heart or brain.
On the other side of the equation are the High-Density Lipoproteins
(HDL), which have the opposite effect on cholesterol. They also circulate through the bloodstream, but round up excess cholesterol
and take it back to the liver to be processed out of your system. Hence, the amount of cholesterol in your system isn't as
meaningful as the relative amounts of these two types of cholesterol.
Diabetes is a metabolic disorder which is characterized by difficulties with processing glucose, causing an elevation
in blood sugar and an assortment of other health problems. There are three main types of diabetes: gestational diabetes, type
I diabetes, and type II diabetes.
Gestational diabetes is a condition experienced by pregnant women who develop high blood sugar,
or glucose, levels. Gestational diabetes occurs when a woman’s pregnant body cannot produce and utilize the insulin
it needs for pregnancy correctly.
Type I diabetes is also sometimes called “insulin-dependent diabetes.” It is an auto-immune
disorder in which the immune system attacks the cells which normally generate insulin, a compound necessary for digesting
II diabetes is characterized by a development of insulin resistance, meaning that the body suddenly needs more insulin to
process glucose than it can produce. It can be caused by genetic and lifestyle factors; being overweight, for example, can
put people at risk of developing type II diabetes.
Erectile Dysfunction (ED):
Erectile dysfunction, also known as impotence or ED, is a
condition in which a male is unable to achieve an erection of the penis, or is unable to sustain that erection long enough
to engage in sexual intercourse.
All too often, erectile dysfunction is seen as a condition of old age. Thus, when a
man begins to experience impotency, that means he is getting old. This is nothing more than an urban myth. The fact is that
ED can and does occur in men of all ages. Age is rarely if ever a factor in male impotence.
Another common misconception
is that male impotency is a completely psychological issue. While there is no doubt that erectile dysfunction can involve
a psychological component prior to and during a period of impotency, modern medicine has also identified that the root cause
for the issue may be physical in nature. For example, the inability to achieve or sustain an erection may be connected to
such health issues as high cholesterol, diabetes, or high blood pressure.
High Blood Pressure/Hypertension:
It is now estimated that nearly one out of every three Americans has high blood pressure. Blood pressure
is the measurement of how much force the flow of blood puts on the arteries. Although blood pressure rises and falls during
the day depending on activity levels, eating habits and other conditions, when blood pressure regularly remains elevated,
it is called high blood pressure.
High blood pressure forces the heart to work harder than it should. The extra force
of blood against the walls of the arteries can cause the arteries to harden. High blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart
attack, heart failure, kidney failure or blindness. However, there are rarely any symptoms; the only way to know if you have
high blood pressure is to have it checked. High blood pressure does not discriminate; anyone can develop high blood pressure,
regardless of age, race or gender.
Lead/Heavy Metal Toxicity:
Lead toxicity, also commonly referred
to as lead poisoning, happens when the body is exposed to an environment that contains lead. Increased levels of lead in the
blood can affect physical and mental developments in children, and overexposure to lead can ultimately lead to death.
of lead toxicity usually occur once a large amount has accumulated within the body over an extended period of time. Children
who suffer from prolonged lead exposure may show signs of weight loss, a loss of appetite, irritability, vomiting, constipation,
abdominal pain, fatigue and learning disabilities. Newborns that are exposed to lead while still in their mother's womb tend
to grow slower and experience learning disabilities.
Adults who suffer from lead toxicity may develop high blood pressure
or mentally decline as they get older. The symptoms they experience might include memory loss, headaches, mood disorders,
muscle weakness, fatigue, and a reduced sperm count in men. Miscarriages and premature births may occur in women, and pain,
tingling sensations or numbness in the extremities may occur in men and women.
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of
arthritis among Americans. Some physicians may call it degenerative joint disease or osteoarthrosis, which indicates a gradual
degeneration of joint tissue over time.
Osteoarthritis does not have one specific cause, but there are a number of factors
which can lead to its formation. Obesity can cause tremendous pressure on the hips, knees and ankle bones. These also happen
to be three of the most common sites for osteoarthritis.
arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by damage to the synovial tissue, resulting in joint pain and reduced
mobility. Since it is a chronic inflammatory disease, rheumatoid arthritis may go far beyond typical arthritis symptoms and
are not isolated to the joints. In fact, certain rheumatoid arthritis symptoms may indicate advanced complications. For instance,
inflammation may occur under the skin as well as in the lungs and the pericardium, the protective sac that surrounds the heart.
Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms may even be found in the sclera, or the fibrous tissue of the white of the eye.
arthritis symptoms may include some unexpected signs. Weight loss, occasional fever, and fatigue may also accompany this disease.
In addition, most rheumatoid arthritis will suffer from anemia as well. Women are three times more likely to experience rheumatoid
arthritis symptoms than men.