Coronary Heart Disease

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Coronary heart disease is a narrowing of the small blood vessels that supply blood and oxygen to the heart. This happens when a waxy substance called plaque builds up inside the coronary arteries, which can eventually lead to a heart attack if the arteries become blocked. More than 60% of the global burden of coronary heart disease occurs in developed countries. Symptoms of coronary heart disease are often very noticeable, and can manifest as chest pain, heart failure or a heart attack. It is extremely important to know the warning signs, as these often signal serious or life-threatening situations. This section contains more detailed information about coronary heart disease, and the diagnostic tools used to detect the disease. Treatment for coronary heart disease usually involves lifestyle changes and, if necessary, drugs and certain medical procedures. Learn about the various treatment options by reading on. Adopting a healthy lifestyle, such as exercising regularly, quitting smoking and managing stress, is the best way to keep your arteries strong and to prevent coronary heart disease. For tips on how to fight against this disease, see Prevention.

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Symptoms of coronary heart disease are often very noticeable, but sometimes you can have the disease and not have any symptoms. This is especially true in the early stages of heart disease. Generally, the signs and symptoms are: Chest pain or discomfort (known as angina): This is the most common symptom, and occurs when the heart is not getting enough blood or oxygen. Y

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Coronary heart disease is a disease in which a waxy substance called plaque builds up inside the coronary arteries. These arteries are the major blood vessels that supply the heart with the oxygen-rich blood and nutrients it needs to function. Any of the coronary arteries can be narrowed by a buildup of fatty plaque, which occurs over many years. By narrowing your coronary art

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Typically, a doctor will first ask questions about your medical and family history, conduct a physical exam and order routine blood tests. He or she may also order any of these diagnostic tests: Electrocardiogram: An electrocardiogram is a painless test that measures and records electrical signals as they travel through your heart. The test shows how fast the heart is b

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Treatment for coronary heart disease usually involves lifestyle changes and, if necessary, drugs and certain medical procedures. Lifestyle changes: Healthy lifestyle changes are the first point of attack against coronary heart disease. These include eating a heart healthy diet, quitting smoking, exercising regularly and reducing stress. For more information, see Prevent

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Just as it helps to treat coronary heart disease, adopting a healthy lifestyle can also prevent the disease by keeping your arteries strong and clear of plaques. To improve your heart health: Maintain a healthy weight: If you're overweight or obese, work with your doctor to create a reasonable weight-loss plan. Controlling your weight helps you control coronary heart di

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