Coronary Artery Disease Baytown
The heart is a muscular pump. I need oxygen and nutrients to function properly. Blood vessels that supply oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood to the heart muscle are called coronary arteries.
Coronary arteries are like small pipes and coronary artery disease (CAD) happens when these arteries get narrower due to fatty material or plaque buildup inside. This is an aging process and is a lifelong condition. Therefore, many people do not know they have it until it starts causing symptoms.
CAD affects more than 15 million American adults, making it the most common type of heart disease.
The American Heart Association (AHA) estimates that someone in the US has a heart attack about every 40 seconds. In addition, for patients with no risk factors for heart disease, the lifetime risk of having the cardiovascular disease is 3.6% for men and less than 1% for women. Having 2 or more risk factors increase the lifetime risk of cardiovascular disease to 37in for men and 18.3% in women.
CAD is sometimes called atherosclerotic heart disease or coronary heart disease.
Initially, as the plaque builds up in the coronary arteries, many people have no symptoms at all. However, if these plaques rupture, they can cause a heart attack in otherwise asymptomatic people.
Over the years, as the plaque build-up continues, significant blockage of the artery (70 percent or more) can develop. This may cause the following symptoms:
- Chest pain
- Pain in the arms or jaw
- Shortness of breath
Dr. Shehzad Sami, a board-certified cardiologist in Baytown, first obtains a complete medical history and performs a comprehensive physical exam to assess risk factors, signs, and symptoms of established CAD or to obtain other clues which help in the diagnosis of CAD.
Here at Houston Cardiovascular Institute in Baytown, we have on-site Laboratory Services for the convenience of our patients. Routine lab work is obtained to check your cholesterol level, sugar, electrolytes, kidney function, and thyroid function
Various tests that are used to diagnose CAD include:
- Electrocardiogram (ECG) – Records heartís electrical activity
- Chest X-ray
- Echocardiogram – Ultrasound of the heart. Used to see the cardiac structures and measure the function of the heart, known as ejection fraction
- Exercise Treadmill Stress Test – Non-invasively evaluate blocked arteries in the heart.
- Nuclear Cardiac Stress Test
- Cardiac Catheterization or Coronary Angiogram – Examines the inside of the heart’s blood vessels using special X-rays called angiograms
There are several treatment options for CAD, including lifestyle changes, medications, surgery, and/or medical procedures.
Dr. Sami may recommend eating a heart-healthy diet, regular exercise, avoiding tobacco smoke, losing weight (if you are overweight or obese), and managing stress.
Medications include Aspirin or other blood thinners and treatment for high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and high blood sugar.
If non-invasive tests are abnormal or symptoms strongly suggest CAD, invasive procedures such as coronary angiogram may be performed with the intent to open blocked arteries with a stent, called percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).
If multiple arteries are found to be blocked or the blockage cannot be opened with stent placement, then coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) or open heart surgery may be needed.
After PCI, CABG, or heart attack, Dr. Sami strongly encourages his patients to enroll in a 12-week cardiac rehab program. Multiple clinical studies have shown beneficial of cardiac rehab to all cardiac patients.
Contact Us Today:
If ANY of the above risk factors apply to you or a loved one, or you have been diagnosed with CAD, make an appointment for an evaluation and discuss various treatment options with Dr. Sami.
Our main office is located at 6051 Garth Road, Suite 300, Baytown, TX 77521. Or you may contact us at 281-839-7949 to set up an appointment.
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