Symptoms of Atherosclerosis


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General information about symptoms of Atherosclerosis: The symptom information on this page attempts to provide a list of some possible symptoms of Atherosclerosis. This symptom information has been gathered from various sources, may not be fully accurate, and may not be the full list of symptoms of Atherosclerosis. Furthermore, symptoms of Atherosclerosis may vary on an individual basis for each patient. Only your doctor can provide adequate diagnosis of symptoms and whether they are indeed symptoms of Atherosclerosis.

List of symptoms of Atherosclerosis: The list of symptoms mentioned in various sources for Atherosclerosis includes:

Symptoms of Atherosclerosis: There are usually no symptoms until one or more arteries are so clogged with plaque that blood flow is severely reduced. This reduced flow of blood and oxygen to some part of the body (such as the heart) is called ischemia and may cause pain or discomfort. Some people have no symptoms until a blood clot forms, completely blocks an already narrowed artery, and causes a heart attack or stroke.

The symptoms you have depend on which arteries are badly clogged and what part of the body is affected by the reduced flow of blood.

  • If arteries taking blood to your heart muscle are affected, you have coronary artery disease (CAD). You may have chest pain called angina that happens when you exert yourself and goes away when you rest. You could also have a heart attack.

  • If arteries taking blood to your brain are affected, you have cerebrovascular disease. You could have a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or a stroke.

  • If arteries taking blood to your legs are affected, you have peripheral arterial disease (PAD). You may have pain in the calf or thigh muscle called intermittent claudication that happens when you walk. This kind of pain goes away when you stop and rest.

All of these conditions are serious and should not be ignored. Arteries taking blood to the intestines, the kidneys, or other organs can also become clogged by plaque. This can sometimes lead to a medical emergency similar to a heart attack or stroke. Atherosclerosis can also cause erectile dysfunction in men.1

More symptoms of Atherosclerosis: In addition to the above information, to get a full picture of the possible symptoms of this condition and its related conditions, it may be necessary to examine symptoms that may be caused by complications of Atherosclerosis, underlying causes of Atherosclerosis, associated conditions for Atherosclerosis, risk factors for Atherosclerosis, or other related conditions.

Medical articles on symptoms: These general reference articles may be of interest:



Footnotes:
1. excerpt from ATHEROSCLEROSIS: NWHIC

Last revision: April 9, 2003

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