How a heart attack happens

Keeping Your Family Safe
Tuesday, August 6, 2013 - 10:56am

Surprising health news today, as we learn that former President George W. Bush underwent a procedure to have a stent placed in his heart. A Bush spokesperson says he had the surgery a day after a blockage was found in an artery. So how can an artery blockage eventually cause a heart attack?

We all know plaque is bad, blocks your blood vessels. Plaque is formed by LDL cholesterol in the blood, the bad cholesterol, think of it as L for lousy.

Building up on the wall of your arteries, forming plaque. Plaque can accumulate slowly, over time, narrowing the blood vessels, like something building up inside a pipe.

This narrowing, in the blood vessels leading to your hear, can cause chest pain, called angina. It can also cause a heart attack.

Did you ever wonder how seemingly healthy people can have a heart attack? This may surprise you, most heart attacks happen in people with no symptoms.

In people whose arteries are less than 50% blocked, here's how: cholesterol can cause unstable bubbles or blisters of plaque to form in your arteries.

These can be incredibly dangerous, most are covered by a cap, but inflammation and stress can cause the cap to thin and rupture, resulting in a clot that blocks the flow of blood to the heart.

Robbed of oxygen, the heart muscle can't function properly, heart attack.


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