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Also known as coronary heart disease (CHD), coronary artery disease (CAD) is one of the most common forms of heart disease and the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. The condition is the result of plaque buildup inside the coronary arteries, which are responsible for supplying oxygen–rich blood to the heart muscle.
Plaque consists of substances found in the blood, including fat, cholesterol and calcium. Plaque buildup can also cause blood clots to form in the arteries, which restricts blood flow to the heart. The buildup of plaque in the arteries is called atherosclerosis. When plaque buildup causes restricted blood flow, patients may experience chest pain, or angina. Angina and shortness are common symptoms of CAD.
CAD can develop over decades with relatively mild symptoms before it results in a heart attack. Regular heart and vascular screenings can help identify blockages and other irregularities before they result in a serious health crisis.
To learn more or to schedule a consult or cardiovascular screening, call 281-737-2500.