Coronary heart disease is a collective term for diseases of the coronary arteries with circulatory disorders of the heart muscle. Coronary heart disease is caused by arteriosclerosis. Two of the most common coronary heart diseases are angina pectoris and heart attack.

Coronary heart disease is caused by arteriosclerosis of the coronary arteries. The constricted arteries reduce the blood flow in the heart. This can manifest itself in angina pectoris or a heart attack.

Risk factors for the occurrence of coronary heart disease are high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, excess body weight and diabetes. The reduction in blood flow in the heart causes the typical symptoms of tightness in the chest and chest pain during physical activity. These symptoms may be accompanied by shortness of breath, a rapid heartbeat or nausea. If the symptoms occur while resting or last longer than 15 minutes, the patient may be suffering a heart attack. In such a situation, you must immediately seek medical help.

Coronary heart disease is diagnosed with different examinations such as a stress ECG echocardiogram or a coronary angiography.

The treatment depends on the severity of the coronary heart disease. The treatment options include medication and opening the constricted coronary arteries with different procedures such as balloon dilatation or stent placement. Find out more in the chapter entitled Surgery on the coronary arteries.

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