Coronary Artery Disease (CAD): What It Is, Risk Factors, What Happens if It Goes Untreated
You don't have to be a doctor to know one important thing: our hearts are probably the most important thing inside of our bodies. If your heart isn't pumping, you're not living. That's why it is a scary thought that the leading cause of death in the United States, among both men and women, is the most common type of heart disease, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD).
What is Coronary Artery Disease?
CAD occurs when the small blood vessels that bring blood and oxygen to the heart get more and more narrow because of the accumulation of fatty deposits. As the space inside gets more limited, it becomes harder for blood to flow to the heart. Sometimes, it can be hard to know if you have CAD because the symptoms can be different in every person. Common symptoms include chest pains, shortness of breath, fatigue, and/or weakness. Heart attacks are a more obvious sign that you could be suffering from CAD.
Who is at risk for Coronary Artery Disease?
Unfortunately, there are many risk factors involved with CAD. The Mayo Clinic lists some of these risk factors as:
- Being a man
- Getting older
- If any of your close relatives have been diagnosed with heart disease
- Being obese and/or physically inactive
- Having high stress or anxiety
- Being diabetic
- Having high blood pressure
- Having high blood cholesterol
What happens if Coronary Artery Disease goes untreated?
If a doctor fails to realize you are suffering from CAD and nothing is done about it, it is possible that you will have a heart attack. A heart attack happens because the coronary artery becomes partially or completely blocked by a blood clot. If the artery is completely blocked, you could go into heart failure. If caught early, a good physician will be able to develop a long-term treatment plan that may include reducing your risk factors and considering various medical procedures.
If you have CAD and your doctor failed to diagnose or treat you properly, this may be a case of cardiology malpractice. Contact the Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma cardiology malpractice attorneys at Girards Law for a free consultation at 888-897-2762.