Heart Disease (cont.)
Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Daniel Lee Kulick, MD, FACC, FSCAI
Dr. Kulick received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Southern California, School of Medicine. He performed his residency in internal medicine at the Harbor-University of California Los Angeles Medical Center and a fellowship in the section of cardiology at the Los Angeles County-University of Southern California Medical Center. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiology.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Heart disease facts
- Introduction to heart disease
- What are the risk factors for heart disease?
- What are the symptoms of heart disease?
- How is heart disease diagnosed?
- Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
- Stress testing
- Perfusion studies
- Computerized tomography
- Heart catheterization or coronary angiography
- What is the treatment for heart disease?
- Prevention of heart disease
- Modifying risk factors for heart disease
- Medications for heart disease
- Angioplasty and stents for heart disease
- Surgery for heart disease
- Heart Disease FAQs
- Find a local Cardiologist in your town
Angioplasty and stenting
If the coronary angiogram (coronary=heart + angio=artery + gram=record) shows significant blockage in an artery, the cardiologist may attempt an angioplasty, in which a balloon is placed via a catheter (as with angiography) at the area of narrowing and when quickly inflated, compresses the offending plaque into the wall of the artery. Often a stent, or a metal cage, is placed at the site of angioplasty to keep the blood vessel from narrowing again. Should a stent be placed, patients are usually started on antiplatelet medication to prevent clot formation. Clopidogrel (Plavix) and prasugrel (Effient) are the two most common medications prescribed.
For those patients with multiple coronary artery blockages, coronary artery bypass grafting may be a consideration.
REFERENCE: Ho JS, et al. Relation of a coronary artery calcium score higher than 400 to coronary stenoses detected using multidetector computed tomography and to traditional cardiovascular risk factors. Am J Cardiol. May 15 2008;101(10):1444-7.
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