What do Coronary Artery Calcifications Mean?

Q:
What do coronary artery calcifications mean?

A:
Coronary artery calcification(CAC) is the result of calcium deposition in the coronary arteries. Coronary arteries are blood vessels that deliver blood supply to the heart for its nourishment and oxygen needs. There are two recognized type of CAC—intimal and medial calcification, and each of them has specific risk factors.

Causes

Several factors can increase an individual’s chance of having coronary artery calcification. Including:

  • High cholesterol levels in the blood
  • Hypertension
  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes

Having a family history of heart disease also increases an individual’s risk of developing the disease.

Treatment

The goals for treatment are to relieve the symptoms, reduce the risk factors, widen the blocked arteries, and prevent further complications. The treatments include:

  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs
  • Stress-management programs
  • Surgery to repair or restore blood flow to the heart.

Patients can also modify their lifestyle, like stopping smoking and alcohol drinking as well as eating healthy foods, are all highly recommended.

Keywords:coronary artery calcifications;cholesterol levels;blood pressure

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