Angina pectoris is the result of myocardial ischemia caused by an imbalance between myocardial blood supply and oxygen demand. In most cases, the lack of blood supply is due to a narrowing of the coronary arteries as a result of arteriosclerosis. This pain is known as angina. It is more likely to occur during exertion (e.g. walking, climbing stairs) when the heart muscle needs more blood and oxygen as it works harder. Angina usually occurs during exertion, severe emotional stress, or after a heavy meal. During these periods, the heart muscle demands more blood oxygen than the narrowed coronary arteries can deliver. Angina is common. It affects about 1 in 50 people and there are estimated to be 1.2 million people with angina in the UK. It is more common in men than women and the likelihood of it occurring increases with age. Angina also can occur in people with valvular heart disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (this is an enlarged heart due to disease) or uncontrolled high blood pressure. Typical angina is uncomfortable pressure, fullness, squeezing or pain in the center of the chest. Many types of chest discomfort aren’t related to angina. Acid reflux (heartburn) and lung infection or inflammation are examples.
Causes of Angina
The common Causes of Angina :
Narrowing of the aortic heart valve
Abnormal heart rhythms
Fast, abnormal heart rhythms,
Diseases of the heart muscle.
Coronary artery spasm (also called Prinzmetal’s angina)
Symptoms of Angina
Some Symptoms of Angina :
Shortness of breath
Feeling of moderate to severe indigestion that is persistent
Sharp, burning or cramping pain
Numbness or a loss of feeling in your arms, shoulders or wrists.
May also occur in the arms, shoulders, neck, jaw, throat, or back
Usually start in the chest behind the breastbone
Treatment of Angina
Eliminating or minimizing risk factors of coronary artery disease by treating high blood pressure, lowering high cholesterol levels, quitting smoking, exercise and weight loss if needed.
Drug therapy, including beta-blockers, nitrates (such as nitroglycerin), calcium channel blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and anti-clotting drugs
Angiography may be performed if symptoms do not improve to help determine if coronary artery bypass surgery or angioplasty is needed
Transmyocardial laser revascularization (TMR) is a new technique for relieving severe angina or coronary artery disease in patients unable to have bypass surgery or angioplasty.
Lowering LDL cholesterol levels as much as possible using drugs .
Hospitalization if the symptoms get worse quickly.