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|Coronary artery disease|
|Synonyms||atherosclerotic heart disease, atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease|
|Illustration depicting atherosclerosis in a coronary artery.|
|Classification and external resources|
|Specialty||Cardiology, cardiac surgery|
|Patient UK||Coronary artery disease|
Coronary artery disease (CAD), also known as ischemic heart disease (IHD), is a group of diseases that includes: stable angina, unstable angina, myocardial infarction, and sudden cardiac death. It is within the group of cardiovascular diseases of which it is the most common type. A common symptom is chest pain or discomfort which may travel into the shoulder, arm, back, neck, or jaw. Occasionally it may feel like heartburn. Usually symptoms occur with exercise or emotional stress, last less than a few minutes, and get better with rest.Shortness of breath may also occur and sometimes no symptoms are present. The first sign is occasionally a heart attack. Other complications include heart failure or an irregular heartbeat.
Risk factors include: high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, lack of exercise, obesity, high blood cholesterol, poor diet, and excessive alcohol, among others. Other risks include depression. The underlying mechanism involves atherosclerosis of the arteries of the heart. A number of tests may help with diagnoses including: electrocardiogram, cardiac stress testing, coronary computed tomographic angiography, and coronary angiogram, among others.
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