Treatment for coronary heart disease (CHD) can help manage symptoms and reduce the risk of problems in the future. CHD can be managed well with a mix of lifestyle changes, medication, and in rare cases, surgery.
CHD symptoms can be reduced, and heart function can be improved with the right treatment.
How to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease?
If you’ve been diagnosed with coronary heart disease, a few simple lifestyle changes can help you reduce your risk of developing more harmful side effects. For example, quitting smoking after a heart attack lowers your future risk of heart attack to the same level as a non-smoker. Other lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly, can help reduce your risk of heart disease in the future.
CHD is treated using a variety of medicines. These usually aim to lower blood pressure or dilate the arteries. Because some medications have negative side effects, finding one that works may take some time. Your alternatives will be discussed with you by a general practitioner or a specialist.
There’s a chance that abruptly stopping a heart medication without consulting a doctor will make your symptoms worse.
Blood thinners reduce the risk of a heart attack by thinning your blood and preventing it from clotting.
The following are examples of common blood thinners:
- low-dose aspirin
If you have high cholesterol, you may be prescribed cholesterol-lowering statins, which include:
Statins work by suppressing cholesterol synthesis and increasing the amount of LDL receptors in the liver. This helps remove LDL cholesterol from the blood, reducing the likelihood of a heart attack.
Statins are not universally applicable, so you may need to test multiple types before finding one that works for you.
Beta-blockers including atenolol, bisoprolol, metoprolol, and nebivolol are commonly used to treat hypertension and prevent angina. They work by blocking the effects of a specific hormone in the body, which causes the heart rate to slow and blood flow to increase.
Nitrates are used to widen blood vessels. Physicians refer to nitrates as vasodilators sometimes. Glyceryl trinitrate and isosorbide mononitrate are available in a variety of forms, including tablets, sprays, and skin patches.
Nitrates work by relaxing blood vessels, which increases blood flow. This lowers blood pressure and relieves heart pain. Headaches, vertigo, and flushed skin are among the minor adverse effects of nitrates.
Inhibitors of the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)
Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) are commonly used to treat hypertension. Among them are ramipril and lisinopril. They work by preventing the hormone angiotensin-2 from causing blood vessel constriction.
ACE inhibitors improve blood circulation throughout the body in addition to reducing the workload of the heart. Your blood pressure will be monitored while taking ACE inhibitors, and regular blood tests will be required to check that your kidneys are functioning properly.
Less than one in every hundred patients who take ACE inhibitors experience problems with blood flow to their kidneys (renal stenosis). Dry cough and dizziness are common side effects of ACE inhibitors.
Angiotensin II receptor antagonists (ARBs)
Angiotensin-2 receptor blockers (ARBs) and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors) work in a similar way. They are used to lower blood pressure by blocking angiotensin-2. In most cases, minor dizziness is the only unpleasant effect. They are widely used as a substitute for ACE inhibitors because they do not cause a dry cough.
Calcium channel blockers
Calcium channel blockers lower blood pressure by relaxing the muscles that line the insides of the artery walls. As a result, the arteries widen, decreasing blood pressure. Amlodipine, verapamil, and diltiazem are among other medications used to treat high blood pressure. Headaches and flushing of the face are common side effects, but they usually fade away with time.
Diuretics, sometimes known as water pills, remove excess water and salt from the body through urine.
Procedures and operations
Interventional techniques or surgery may be required to unblock or bypass clogged arteries if your blood vessels are restricted due to atheroma (fatty deposits) or if your symptoms are not controlled by drugs.
The following are some of the most prevalent artery-clogging treatments.
Coronary angioplasty is often referred to as percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA), and balloon angioplasty. Patients with angina can have angioplasty as a planned procedure or as an emergency treatment if their symptoms have become uncontrollable.
Angiograms (a type of X-ray used to inspect blood vessels) will determine if you are a candidate for the treatment. Coronary angioplasty is also used as an emergency treatment for heart attacks. During the procedure, a small balloon is inserted to push the fatty tissue in the restricted artery outward. Blood circulation is improved as a result.
To maintain the artery open, a metal stent (a tube formed of wire mesh) is typically inserted. Drug-eluting stents can also be used. These medications keep the artery from narrowing further.
Coronary bypass grafting
Coronary bypass grafting (CABG) is also known as bypass surgery, heart bypass surgery, or coronary artery bypass surgery. It is used to treat people who have narrowed or clogged arteries. Your eligibility for the treatment will be determined by an angiography of the coronary arteries.
The Off-Pump Coronary Artery Bypass (OPCAB) procedure is a type of coronary artery surgery performed without the aid of a heart-lung machine because the heart pumps blood on its own. Between the major artery leaving the heart (the aorta) and a segment of the coronary artery beyond the restricted or obstructed section, a blood vessel is implanted (grafted).
A blood vessel that supplies the chest wall is occasionally used and redirected to one of the heart’s arteries. This permits blood to bypass the narrowed sections of the coronary arteries.
When the heart is significantly damaged and treatment is ineffective, or when the heart is unable to pump blood properly throughout the body (heart failure), a heart transplant may be necessary.
A heart transplant is a procedure that involves replacing a damaged or dysfunctional heart with a healthy donor heart.
Want to learn more?
You can learn more about caring for coronary artery disease in our chronic diseases care brochure. Please reach out to us at email@example.com, or call us at 1-855-410-7971 to arrange care for a loved one.