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Cardiovascular Disease.

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Introduction

BIOLOGY COUSEWORK: CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE 26.12.2002 HABIR MOASO ISCHACMIC (CORONARY) HEART DISEASE In today's society, people are gaining medical knowledge at a quite a fast pace. Treatments, cures and vaccines for various diseases and disorders are being developed constantly, and yet, coronary heart disease remains the number one killer in the world. It accounts for about 80% of all sudden deaths. In fact, the number of deaths from heart disease approximately equals to the number of deaths from cancer, chronic lung disease, pneumonia, influenza, and others. So what is causing this disastrous disease? Like any muscle in a living organism, the heart needs a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients that are carried to it by the blood in the coronary arteries. When the coronary arteries become clogged with fatty plaques, causing a thickening inside the walls of the artery, known as atherosclerosis. This narrows the space through which blood can flow, decreasing and sometimes completely cutting off the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the heart. The result is Ishacmic heart disease. If not enough oxygen reaches the heart, the heart may respond with a pain called angina. The pain is usually experienced in the center of the chest and felt in the left arm or shoulder. ...read more.

Middle

And as a result atherosclerosis develops. Hypertension-High blood pressure directly damages the artery lining by several mechanisms. The increase pressure compresses the tiny vessels that provide supply to the artery wall, causing structural damage changes in the arteries. The change in structure narrows the artery walls, as a result reducing the amount of blood and oxygen supply reaching the heart. The narrowing of the artery also blocks the passage, which the blood and oxygen pass through in order to reach the heart. And therefore causing the artery to be clogged with fatty plaques and resulting to atherosclerosis. But there are other risk factors that are within are power to modify. They include smoking, high level of cholesterol, obesity, lack of exercise and consumption of alcohol. Smoking-Smoking tobacco affects the heart in several ways. The nicotine it contains causes the brain to instruct the adrenal gland to provide more adrenaline, the harmone that speeds heart rate. A faster heart rate beats increase the hearts needs for oxygen and the pump of the heart must work hard to compensate. If the coronary arteries are already narrowed or blocked the extra work may be critical. Large amounts of adrenaline can also lead to irregular heartbeat. ...read more.

Conclusion

Coronary heart disease is treated in several ways, depending on the seriousness of the disease. For many individuals coronary heart disease is managed with changes in lifestyle and medications. Others with severe coronary heart disease may require surgery. Patients are often advised to change lifestyle habits such as changing one's diet to a diet of low fat, especially saturated fat and cholesterol level, patients are also advised to eat less fat in order to lose weight. Losing weight is important as it helps to reduce high blood pressure. Physical activity is also encouraged, as recent research has shown that even moderate exercise are associated with lower deaths rates from coronary heart disease. However individuals with a severe coronary heart disease are not encouraged to exercise. Smoking is also another factor that is often discouraged. It has been recognized that quitting smoking dramatically lowers the risk of a heart attack and also reduces the risk of second heart attack in individuals who have already had one. If drug changes in lifestyle and medications fail to work, patients are often advised to undertake surgery. One of the highly successful coronary bypass operation may be performed. Bypass operation involves the removal of the saphenous vein in the leg, and used to bypass blocked or damaged coronary arteries. One end of the grafted saphenous vein is joined to the aorta to pick up blood, and the other end is spliced into the coronary circulation. ...read more.

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