Cardiovascular disease (heart disease) is one of the heart problems commonly found in our society. It is not a single condition or disorder in itself.
Rather, it is a collection of diseases and conditions. In fact, some types of cardiovascular diseases can even cause other kinds of diseases.
Doctor David Mwesigye working at King Faisal hospital says some types of cardiovascular disease are congenital—one is born with it.
The doctor says that other forms of the cardiovascular disease develop over time.
These acquired conditions are the forms you can often help prevent by doing such things as exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet or quitting smoking.
Likewise, a bulging section of blood vessel also is a type of cardiovascular disease.
Dr. Mwesigye explains that the heart consists of a muscle that pumps blood, arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle, and valves to ensure that blood is pumped in the correct direction.
At any point in the pumping process, or in any part of the heart, something can go wrong. There are many types of heart diseases, and not all are the consequences of unhealthy lifestyle habits.
Some babies are born with a defect in one of the heart’s valves that causes blood to leak and prevents the heart from working at top efficiency.
One of the commonest type is the coronary artery disease. These, are diseases of the arteries that supply the heart muscle with blood.
Coronary artery disease is the most common form of heart disease in industrialised nations. Blood flow through the arteries is impaired.
The actively contracting heart muscle needs a steady supply of oxygen and nutrients to function. This means arteries whose inner lining is normally smooth, slowly become clogged with clumps of fats, cholesterol and other material.
As a result, the supply of blood with its oxygen and nutrients going to the heart muscle is cut off, this means the heart cannot function normally, and a person begins experiencing the physical consequences.
Some of the consequences include chest pain, which occurs when the oxygen demand of the heart muscle exceeds the oxygen supply because of that narrowing in the coronary arteries.
When the imbalance of oxygen supply lasts for more than a few minutes, the heart muscle can begin to die, causing a heart attack.
This may occur without symptoms or silent heart attack especially in people with diabetes. In addition, the lack of blood, even briefly, can lead to serious disorders of the heart rhythm.
Coronary artery disease can also cause sudden death without warning.
Some of the preventive measures include; do not smoke or use other tobacco products, eat a varied diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat foods.
Maintain a healthy weight, get at least 30 minutes of exercise daily, most days of the week and keep your cholesterol levels in normal ranges.
It is also important to control the blood sugar if one has diabetes and control the blood pressure.