Heart Disease Risk Factors You Can Change
- High blood cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Physical Inactivity
- Being overweight
Risk Factors You Can’t Change
- Your age
- Your sex
- Your family medical history
How Heart Disease Develops
Heart disease occurs when a process called atherosclerosis clogs or blocks one or more of your coronary arteries. These are the “pipes” that supply your heart muscle with the oxygen-rich blood it needs.
The Effects of Heart Disease
At first, you may not realize you are developing heart disease. You can’t see or feel plaque buildup on the walls of your arteries. However, when this buildup affects the flow of blood to your heart muscle, the results can be serious.
Angina occurs when the arteries that supply blood to your heart muscle are severely blocked. Although scary, angina does not cause by permanent damage.
A heart attack occurs when one or more arteries that supply blood to your heart muscle are completely blocked. A heart attack causes permanent damage to your heart muscle and can be fatal.
Angina and Heart Attack Symptoms
- Unusual chest pain, pressure, or burning that may spread into left or right arm, neck, back, or jaw
- Nausea (feeling like you are going to throw up)
- Shortness of breath
Is it Angina or is it a Heart Attack?
- Go away with rest
- Do not last over 20 minutes
- Occur with exertion or excitement
Heart Attack Symptoms
- Do not go away with rest
- Last over 20 minutes
- May occur without exertion or excitement