A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Angina - Most commonly referred to as chest pain. It's often described as a pressure or tightness in the chest - as if someone were standing on your chest. Angina is usually brought on by physical or emotional stress.
Angina-unstable - Chest pain that comes back often or hurts more every time it return. It may start while you are resting or exercising. After resting you may still have pain.
Angiogram - (Cardiac catheterization or cardiac cath). A test in which a small tube (catheter) is inserted into an artery in your arm or leg and guided to your heart either right side, left side or both. Contrast dye is injected into the catheter and is filmed as it moves through the coronary arteries, heart chambers and heart's valves.
Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors - These drugs allow blood to flow from your heart more easily, decreasing your heart's workload. ACE inhibitors are the mainstay treatment for congestive heart failure, which can be a complication of coronary artery disease.
Angiplasty-Balloon - (PTCA) is performed by placing a balloon tipped catheter (under x-ray guidance) into the coronary artery of bypass graft and positioning the balloon across the blockage. Inflation of the balloon applies pressure to the plaque, cracking and splitting it while causing the artery to stretch. The purpose is to increase the diameter of the coronary vessel for improved blood flow. After the balloon is deflated the catheter is removed.
Arrhythmia - An abnormal or irregular heart rhythm.
Atherectomy - A coronary atherectomy is different from a PTCA in that it aims to remove the blockage from the coronary artery, the blood vessel is opened for better blood flow.
Atherosclerosis - The slow, progressive buildup of hardened deposits called plaques on the inner walls of your arteries. Plaques are deposits of fat, cholesterol, calcium and other cellular sludge from your blood.
Atrial Fibrillation - An electrically charged area other than the SA node causes the atria to beat at a very fast and irregular rate, so the atria beat very quickly and ineffectively. This may happen once in a while (for seconds to hours) or all the time.
Beta-blockers - An electrically charged area other than the SA node causes the atria to beat at a very fast and irregular rate, so the atria beat very quickly and ineffectively. This may happen once in a while (for seconds to hours) or all the time.
Calcium channel blockers - These medications cause the muscles that surround your coronary arteries to relax and the vessels to open more, increasing blood flow to your heart. They also control high blood pressure.
Cardiac catheterization - (cardiac cath or angiogram). A test in which a small tube (catheter) is inserted into an artery in your arm or legs and guided to your heart. Contrast dye is injected into the catheter and is filmed as it moves through the coronary arteries, heart chambers and heart's valves.
Cardiac rehabilitation - A structured program of education, counseling and activity guided toward lifestyle changes, increased stamina, peer support, wellness and prevention. A formal cardiac rehab program includes exercise with cardiac monitoring and supervision by a nurse, exercise physiologist and respiratory therapist.
Cardiomegaly - Hypertrophy of the heart caused most frequently by pulmonary hypertension, also occurs in ateriovenous fistula, congential aortic stenosis, ventricular septal defect., PDS, and Paget's disease.
Cardiomypathy - Any disease that affects the myocardium frequently leads to cardiogenic shock.
Claudication - Claudication is a symptom of poor blood circulation involving your arteries. Although claudication is a relatively common condition, it can signal a potential risk for more serious health problems down the line. In many instances, though, it responds well to simple treatments.
Cholesterol - A fatty substance found in body cells of humans and animals (all foods of animal origin contain this substance). Cholesterol helps form hormones, cell membranes, and other life-enforcing substances, but the body is naturally able to manufacture all it needs.
Congestive Heart Failure - A healthy heart can pump blood to all parts of the body in a few seconds. When the heart can no longer do this, a person has heart failure.
Coronary Artery Disease - It results from atherosclerosis - the gradual buildup of hardened deposits called plaques in arteries that feed your heart (your coronary arteries). Over time these plaques - deposits of fat, cholesterol, calcium and other cellular sludge from your blood - can narrow your coronary arteries, so less blood flows to your heart. Diminished blood flow to your heart can cause chest pain (angina).
Coronary bypass surgery - This heart surgery procedure creates a route for blood to go around a blocked stretch of a coronary artery. A blood vessel, usually taken from your leg or chest, is grafted directly onto a narrowed artery, bypassing the blocked area. If more than one artery is blocked, a bypass can be done on each. The blood can then go around the obstruction to supply your heart with enough blood to relieve chest pain.
Coronary Stents - A stent is a small metal coil or mesh tube that is placed in a narrowed artery through a catheter( a long thin tube) to help improve blood flow to your heart. The stent holds the passageway open and helps to reduce the rate of Stenosis.
Echocardiogram (echo) - This test uses sound waves to produce an image of your heart. An echocardiogram can help identify whether an area of your heart has been damaged from lack of blood supply by assessing how well that area moves during each heartbeat.
Ejection Fraction (EF) - The ratio of cardiac stroke volume to end diastolic volume.
Electrocardiogram (ECG) - This is a simple test in which patches with wires (electrodes) are attached to your skin to measure electrical impulses given off by your heart. This test can show evidence of a previous heart attack or one that's in progress.
Electron-beam computed tomography (EBCT) - This test can detect calcium within plaques that clog coronary arteries. Most, but not all, plaques contain some calcium. If a substantial amount of calcium is discovered, coronary artery disease is likely. Diagnosing heart disease can be a complicated process.
Electrophysiology studies (EPS) - During EPS, your heart rhythm is closely monitored, and any changes studied. EPS can help determine exactly what your rhythm problem is and what can be done to control it.
Gene Therapy - Scientists are using genes that produce growth factor proteins to stimulate growth of new blood vessels (angiogenesis) and restore blood flow to the heart. They're studying delivery of the genes and proteins to the heart via a direct injection into the heart through a small incision or by a catheter-delivery technique.
High-density lipoproteins (HDL) - Good Cholesterol. HDL's are proteins that carry fat through the body. A lipid (fat) must attached to a protein to be carried in the body. This good component lowers cholesterol level by picking up fat and returning it to the liver for reprocessing or excretion. HDL is a part of the lipid profile.
Laser revascularization - This approach is being developed to treat people with severe narrowing or blockages of the coronary arteries that cannot be treated effectively with bypass surgery or balloon angioplasty. Physicians use lasers to create tiny new channels directly into the wall of the heart muscle in a technique called percutaneous transmyocardial revascularization. The laser is inserted into the heart through a catheter. Scientists think the laser bursts stimulate growth of tiny new blood vessels.
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) - LDL is scavenger protein that picks up bad fat. This protein deposits bad cholesterol on artery walls, forming plaque, which contributes to coronary artery disease and high blood pressure. LDL is a part of the Lipid profile.
Monounsaturated fats - Fatty acids found in both plant and animal fat that appear mainly in vegetable and nut oils. Olive oil, peanut oil, some margarines and vegetable shortening are high in monounsaturated fatty acids.
Myocardial infarction (Heart attack) - A heart attack results when an artery to your heart becomes completely blocked and the heart muscle fed by that artery dies. A blood clot or other blockage in an already narrowed and diseased coronary artery usually causes this. Pain from a heart attack is often described as crushing and lasts longer than the pain of angina.
Nitroglycerin - Nitroglycerin tablets, spray and patches are used to control chest pain (angina) by both opening up your coronary arteries and reducing your heart's demand for oxygen.
Nonexercise (pharmacological) stress tests - These tests are for people who can't exercise, such as those with arthritis or leg problems. A medication, such as adenosine, dipyridamole or dobutamine, is used to "stress" your heart and mimic the effects of exercise.
Nuclear scan - This test also helps identify blood flow problems to your heart. Trace amounts of radioactive material, such as thallium or a compound known as cardiolyte, are injected into your bloodstream. Special cameras can detect areas where there is less blood flow to your heart.
Omega Three Fatty Acids - Omega-3s lessen the clotting tendency of the blood, reduce heart arrhythmias and hypertension, improve rheumatoid arthritis, lower risk of kidney disease, and possibly protect against cancer. May reduce risk of depression and improve symptoms of bipolar disorder. Omega-3s are called "essential fatty acids" because they can't be manufactured in the body and are essential elements in the diet. Most American diets are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids. Studies suggest that you take in about 1 gram of omega-3s a day for optimum benefit.
Premature atrial contraction (PAC\'s) - A premature contraction of the heart stimulated by an irritable site of cardiac tissue that is located with the atria.
Premature ventricular contractions (PVC\'s) - A premature contraction of the heart stimulated by an irritable site of cardiac tissue that is located in the ventricles.
Pacemaker - A small device put inside the body to prompt the heart to beat. They fit under your skin, often in the shoulder area. A pacemaker has two parts: a battery/timer (called a pulse generator), one or more wires that carry electrical signals to the heart.
Pentoxifylline (Trental) - It is a medication that helps make blood more slippery so it can slide more easily through narrowed arteries, is the only drug approved for claudication. However, only about a third of those who take it are able to increase their walking distance.
Plaque - A plaque is a place inside an artery wher LDL has built up over the years. Plaques are mixtures of cholesterol, fats. Fibrous tissue and white blood cells on the walls of arteries.
Polyunsaturated fats - Fatty acids are found in most foods, including fish, but mainly found in the fat from food plants, including safflower, sunflower, corn, soybean and cottonseed oils. Polyunsaturated fats are liquid at room temperature.
Pulmonary function test - A machine measures the rate and amount of air inhaled and exhaled through a mouthpiece. This test helps to evaluate respiratory function and diagnose lung disease.
Saturated fats - Fatty acids that tend to dangerously raise blood cholesterol levels; they generally appear solid at room temperature. Saturated fat is found in all foods from animal sources, including meat and dairy products, but also coconut and palm oils. Saturated fat raises LDL (bad) cholesterol and clog up our arteries-boosting the risk of heart disease and stroke-some studies indicate that they raise the risk of colon and prostate cancer as well.
Stress test - Stress tests help measure how well your heart muscle functions and whether it's getting adequate blood supply.
Trans-Fatty Acids (The Worst) - Found in margarine, vegetable shortening, hydrogenated vegetable oils and products made from them (including virtually all commercial snack foods such as crackers, cake, cookies, pastries, etc.) and deep-fried foods. Trans-fatty acids are created when manufacturers bubble hydrogen through heated polyunsaturated oils in order to make them more stable for frying, or to extend their shelf life. This is an unnatural process, and the fatty acid molecules it produces have an unnatural shape that's very different from the one your body is used to. Your body used fatty acids to make hormones and build cell membranes, and when it attempts that with Trans-fatty acids, the results will be defective hormones and defective cell membranes. Trans-fatty acids act like saturated fat in the body-only worse. Not only do they raise LDL (L = lethal) cholesterol as saturated fats do, but they lower HDL (H = healthy) cholesterol, whose job it is to carry excess cholesterol from the blood stream.
Treadmill exercise stress test - You walk on a treadmill while an ECG records your heart's response to an increasing workload. The test is usually used for screening or as a first-line evaluation of symptoms.
Triglycerides - They are a component of your lipid profile. They are the form in which fat is carried through our blood to the tissues. The bulk of your body 's fat tissue is in the form of triglycerides. Triglyceride levels less than 200mg/d/L are considered normal.
Unsaturated fats - Fatty acids, either polyunsaturated or monounsaturated, that lowers blood cholesterol levels.