About Coronary Artery Disease
Coronary artery disease, where plaque builds up and eventually blocks blood flow in the arteries leading to the heart, can develop gradually over many years. Plaque is made up of cholesterol, other fatty substances and fibrous tissue. Some people may have no symptoms, and people who do have symptoms may experience them very differently.
Risk of Developing Coronary Artery Disease
Several factors increase the risk of developing coronary artery disease, and controlling these factors can help reduce a person’s risk:
Our Medical College of Wisconsin specialists work together to deliver the best and most appropriate care options for each patient with coronary artery disease. We strive for excellent patient care to deliver the best possible outcomes, avoiding unnecessary tests and treatments.
Coronary Artery Can Lead to Other Heart Conditions
People with coronary artery disease are at risk for:
- Angina – Angina is chest pain or discomfort that occurs when the heart doesn’t get enough oxygen-rich blood.
- Heart Attack – For some people, a heart attack is the first sign they have coronary artery disease. A heart attack occurs when the blood supply to the heart is stopped or cut off by plaque buildup or a blood clot in the arteries. A heart attack may also be called a myocardial infarction (MI).
Over time, coronary artery disease can damage the heart muscle and lead to other serious heart conditions including: