What is heart disease?
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is a major cause of death in the UK and worldwide. CHD is sometimes called ischaemic heart disease or coronary artery disease.
Symptoms of coronary heart disease (CHD)
The main symptoms of coronary heart disease are:
chest pain (angina)
shortness of breath
pain throughout the body
feeling sick (nausea)
But not everyone has the same symptoms and some people may not have any before coronary heart disease is diagnosed.
Causes of coronary heart disease (CHD)
Coronary heart disease is the term that describes what happens when your heart's blood supply is blocked or interrupted by a build-up of fatty substances in the coronary arteries.
Over time, the walls of your arteries can become furred up with fatty deposits. This process is known as atherosclerosis and the fatty deposits are called atheroma.
Atherosclerosis can be caused by lifestyle factors, such as smoking and regularly drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
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Diagnosing coronary heart disease (CHD)
If a doctor feels you're at risk of coronary heart disease, they may carry out a risk assessment. They'll ask you about your medical and family history and your lifestyle, and they'll take a blood test.
Further tests may be needed to confirm coronary heart disease, including:
Read more about how coronary heart disease is diagnosed.
Treating coronary heart disease (CHD)
Coronary heart disease cannot be cured but treatment can help manage the symptoms and reduce the chances of problems such as heart attacks.
Treatment can include:
lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise and stopping smoking
angioplasty – where balloons and stents are used to treat narrow heart arteries
Recovering from the effects of coronary heart disease (CHD)
If you've had a heart attack, an angioplasty, or heart surgery, it's possible to get back to a normal life. Advice and support is available to help you deal with aspects of your life that may have been affected by coronary heart disease.
Read more about recovering from the effects of coronary heart disease.
Preventing coronary heart disease (CHD)
You can reduce your risk of getting coronary heart disease by making some simple
eating a healthy, balanced diet
being physically active
giving up smoking
controlling blood cholesterol and sugar levels
The heart is a muscle about the size of your fist. It pumps blood around your body and beats approximately 70 times a minute. After the blood leaves the right side of the heart, it goes to your lungs where it picks up oxygen.
The oxygen-rich blood returns to your heart and is then pumped to the body's organs through a network of arteries.
The blood returns to your heart through veins before being pumped back to your lungs again. This process is called circulation.
The heart gets its own supply of blood from a network of blood vessels on the heart's surface called coronary arteries.
Information take from: www.nhs.net
Videos: coronary arteries and heart disease
This video shows how your heart works and what happens when your coronary
arteries stop functioning properly.
British Heart Foundation video: How does a healthy heart work?
myHeart is a comprehensive platform for patients suffering from heart disease, and for those who have undergone recent heart surgery.
The app delivers an individualised self-management and cardiac rehabilitation platform that is customised to your individual condition.
Using this award-winning rehabilitation platform, and the 50 new educational videos, myHeart brings you very best support to help you understand and manage your heart condition.
For further information, visit myHeart
If you would like to be registered to have access to the my mhealth app, there is no need to speak to your GP, the Health and Wellbeing team can do this for you. Please contact the team with the information required - patient’s name, date of birth, NHS number, email address and the app you wish to have access to, e.g. COPD, Asthma, Diabetes, Heart Disease or myOp.
Please note - this service is only available until the 28th March 2024 for new patients to register.