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Everything You Need To Know About Atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis refers to a narrowing of arteries caused by the build-up of plaque. Arteries are blood vessels that transport oxygen and other nutrients between your heart and the rest of your body.
As you age the cholesterol, fats and calcium build up within your arteries and create plaque. The accumulation of plaque causes blood to move through your arterial veins. This can happen anywhere in your body, such as around your legs, your heart as well as the brain and kidneys.

It could cause the loss of oxygen and blood in different tissues of your body. Plaque fragments can be broken, leading to the formation of a blood clot. If not treated, atherosclerosis could cause heart attacks stroke, heart attack, or failure, as well as other diseases.

Atherosclerosis is a typical problem with the aging process. The condition can be treated and numerous effective treatment options are available.

Did you have any idea?

Atherosclerosis is a type of arteriosclerosis. It is also known as hardening of arteries. The words “atherosclerosis” as well as “arteriosclerosis” are often employed interchangeably, however, they are two distinct conditions.

The most common symptoms of atherosclerosis won’t appear until there is a blockage. The most common symptoms are:

Angina or chest pain
the arm, leg, and everywhere else with a blocked an artery
discomfort in the buttocks during walking
The confusion can occur if the blockage hinders the circulation of your brain
Loss of sensory or motor functioning on one aspect of your body, which happens when the blockage hinders the circulation of the brain.
leg muscles weakening because of a the lack of circulation

It is also crucial to be aware of the signs that indicate a heart attack or stroke. Both are caused by atherosclerosis, and require medical attention immediately.

The signs for a heart attack are:

chest discomfort or pain
discomfort in the shoulders back, neck, jaw, and back
Abdominal discomfort
nausea or vomiting
A sense of imminent doom

The signs of stroke are:

Numbness or weakness of the limbs or face
trouble speaking
trouble understanding speech
Vision problems
Balance loss
sudden, severe headache

A stroke or heart attack can be medical emergency situations. Contact 911 or the emergency services in your area and visit a medical emergency department at a hospital as quickly as you can if you notice symptoms of an attack on your heart or stroke.

As plaque accumulates and the arteries get hard and inflamed, blood will have difficulty getting throughout the entire body. This stops your tissues and organs from receiving oxygenated blood they require to function.

The following are the most common reasons for the hardening of arterial walls:

High cholesterol

Cholesterol, a waxy yellow substance that is naturally present in the human body and in some foods you consume.

If cholesterol levels within your bloodstream are excessively high, it could block your blood vessels. It forms a hard, swollen plaque that blocks the flow of blood to your heart and other organs.


It’s essential to consume the right diet. It is recommended that you follow the American Heart Association (AHA)Trusted Source recommends following an overall healthy diet that emphasizes:

A wide variety of vegetables and fruits
Whole grains
dairy products that are low in fat
fish and poultry, but with skins
legumes and nuts
Non-tropical vegetable oils like sunflower or olive oil

Other diet-related tips:

Beware of foods and drinks that contain added sugars, like sweetened drinks, candy, and sweets. It is recommended by the AHA recommendsTrusted Source to consume no greater than six teaspoons, or 100 calories in sugar daily for women in general and not over 9 teaspoons, or 150 calories a each day for the majority of men.
Beware of foods that are high in salt. You should aim to consume less than 2,300 milligrams sodiumTrusted Source daily. Ideally, you should consume less than 1,500 milligrams daily.
Beware of foods that are with a high content of unhealthy fats, for example trans fats. Replace these with unsaturated fats which are healthier for your health. If you’re trying to reduce your blood cholesterol levels cut down on saturated fats to a maximum of 5-6 percent of your total calories from Trusted Source. If you consume 2500 calories per day it’s around thirteen grams saturated fat.


As you get older your blood vessels and the heart are more prone to pump blood and get it into your body. Your arteries could get stiffer and less flexible which makes them more vulnerable to plaque accumulation.

The doctor will conduct physical examinations when you are suffering from atherosclerosis. They’ll be looking for:

A weak pulse
An aneurysm is an irregular bulging and widening an artery because of weakness in the wall of an arterial
Slow wound healing is a sign of a blocked blood flow
A noise, or a howling sound blood makes when it moves through the artery that is blocked

A cardiologist can examine your heart to determine if you’ve got any unusual sound. The doctor may order additional tests if they suspect you could be suffering from atherosclerosis.

Tests may include:

A blood test to determine your cholesterol levels
It’s a Doppler ultrasound that uses sound waves to produce an image of the artery, which will show if there’s obstruction
An ankle-brachial index is used to detect blockages in your legs or arms by comparing blood pressure of each leg
A magnetic resonance angiography, or a computed-tomography angiography which produce images of major arteries of your body.
Angiograms of the heart, also known as cardiac angiograms is a form of chest X-ray, which is taken following the arteries of your heart are filled with radioactive dye
An Electrocardiogram (ECG also known as an EKG) is a test that analyzes the electrical activity of your heart, to identify areas with decreased blood flow
A stress test, also known as an exercise tolerance testthat will monitor the heart rate as well as blood pressure as you train on the treadmill or stationary bicycle

The treatment involves altering your way of life to reduce the amount of cholesterol and fat you consume. It is possible to exercise more regularly to strengthen the condition of your heart and blood vessels.

Your physician may suggest lifestyle changes as the initial method of treatment. You might also require other medical procedures like surgical procedures or medication.


The use of medications can prevent atherosclerosis from getting worse.

The medications for treating atherosclerosis are:

Statins are cholesterol-lowering medications, which include statins.
angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, which may lower blood pressure
beta-blockers, that “rest” the heart.
Antiplatelet medicines like aspirin, to stop blood clotting and blocking your arterial

Aspirin is particularly beneficial for those with an history of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, which includes stroke and heart attack. A regimen of aspirin discussed with your physician could reduce the risk of another health problem in the event that you already suffer from atherosclerosis.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recently issued updated guidelines regarding the use of aspirin to prevent cardiovascular disease. These guidelines might be helpful when discussing your medical doctor.

If you do not have a prior history of cardiovascular atherosclerosis Aspirin should only be used for preventive purposes in cases where your risk of bleeding is minimal and your chance of developing atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease is extremely high. Be sure to discuss your aspirin treatment with your doctor before you begin.


If the symptoms are particularly extreme or if muscle or skin tissue is at risk Surgery may be required.

The possible surgeries to treat atherosclerosis are:

bypass surgery, which entails the use of a vessel that is located inside your body or a tube that is made up of synthetic material, to redirect blood flow to your narrowed or blocked artery
thrombolytic therapy, that is breaking up a blood clot injecting the drug into the artery that is affected.
Percutaneous coronary angioplasty and angioplasty is the process of using balloons and catheters to increase the size of your artery. often putting in a stent to maintain the artery’s open
atherectomy is the process of removing plaque from your arteries using a catheter equipped with sharp blades at the other end.
endarterectomy, which is the procedure of surgically removing fat deposits from the artery

A variety of factors put your at risk for developing atherosclerosis. Certain risk factors are able to be reduced but others aren’t.

Family family history

If atherosclerosis is a part of the family of yours, then you could be at risk of hardening of the blood vessels. It is possible to inherit this condition and also suffer from other heart-related issues.

Exercise is not enough

Regular exercise is beneficial for the heart. It helps keep your heart muscles robust and helps increase the flow of blood and oxygen throughout your body.

Inactivity can increase your chance of contracting a range of medical conditions, such as heart disease.

High blood pressure

The high blood pressure could cause damage to blood vessels, creating a weakening in specific regions. Cholesterol, along with other substances found in your blood could reduce the flexibility and flexibility of your blood vessels with time.


The smoke of tobacco can harm your heart and blood vessels.


Diabetes sufferers are more likely to be victims of coronary artery diseases.

Lifestyle modifications can help reduce and combat atherosclerosis, particularly for those with type 2 diabetes.

Changes to your lifestyle that can be beneficial include:

eating a balanced diet that’s low in cholesterol and saturated fats.
Avoiding fatty foods
Include fish in your diet every week, instead of red meat
receiving at least an hour of intense exercise, or 75 minutes moderate exercise per week
Quitting smoking if you’re a smoker
Maintaining a healthy and moderate weight
managing stress
managing conditions that are associated with atherosclerosis treating conditions associated with atherosclerosis, like hypertension, high cholesterol obesity, sleep apnea and the condition known as diabetes

There may be improvement in your health as a result of treatment, however, it may require some time. The effectiveness of your treatment will be contingent on:

The severity and extent of your illness
the speed at which it was dealt with
the extent to which other organs were affected

The arteries’ hardening cannot be reversed. But, treating the root causes and making healthy diet and lifestyle changes will help to slow the process down or stop it from becoming worse.

Be sure to work with your doctor to implement the right lifestyle adjustments. They’ll assist you in finding the appropriate medications to treat your condition and prevent complications.