- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
Atherosclerosis - Form of Heart Disease
Though the cause of Whitney Houston's death was drowning the underlying factor is, she had heart disease called Antheroscierotic. This is caused when the arteries going to our heart and other organs in our bodies become hardened because of plaque build up in these arteries. The arteries that can be affected are the arteries to the heart, brain and even the legs. The harden arteries can lead to stroke, heart attack, poor circulation and death. This disease is the number one killer of men and women throughout the US.
This disease can contribute other problems with our bodies, chronic kidney disease and carotid artery disease to name a few. There are other diseases that can be contributed to Atherosclerosis.
Symptoms of this disease depend on the severity, some cases are mild and go up to life threatening. The mild cases are hard to diagnosis, the symptoms are barely noticeable. A person with a more severe case will exhibit signs of chest pains if it's affecting the heart. If it's affecting the brain there may be weakness and tingling in the arms, hands, legs or dropping muscles. When the legs are affected a person may have discomfort or a hard time walking.
The hardening of the arteries of the heart can cause stroke or heart attack if it goes unnoticed. If a person complains of check pains they can take blood levels to see if there are any changes, complete a physical exam, ultra sound, can schedule a stress test. Depending on what they find will determine the course of actions. They sometimes suggest scheduling a Cardiac Categorization. This procedure will determine the severity of the condition and determine if anything more needs to be done. They may suggest taking medication or performing an angioplasty where a balloon like substance is inserted into the artery to open up the blockage or if the blockage is far spread and more severe they may need to perform a bypass. If while performing the cardiac categorization they determine the situation is serious they may admit the patient right away and prepare them for the by pass surgery the following day or transfer them to a hospital that has specialized surgeons for heart related issues.
Those who have mild to moderate blockages will be educated in lifestyle changes in their diets, in their alcohol consumption, losing weight and exercise routine. They will need to remove salt and fried foods from their diet. Learn how to read the nutritional facts on packaged foods, stop smoking, eat healthy and get plenty of rest. These changes will help the situation for the majority of the patients however those who have family history must be diligent in making these changes. Their risk factor is doubled if this is a heredity disease.