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Coronary Artery Disease
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Coronary artery disease can start when you're young. Over time, your coronary arteries may become blocked, leading to a heart attack.

It's the leading cause of death in the U.S., but with proper care it's often preventable.

What Is Coronary Artery Disease?

Coronary artery disease (also called coronary heart disease) is the most common form of heart disease. It happens when your heart's main arteries become blocked with fatty, waxy deposits called plaque. The plaque prevents adequate blood and oxygen from reaching your heart.

We offer unparalleled heart care thanks to a team of dedicated specialists and the most advanced technology for diagnosing and treating coronary artery disease.

The Region's Leading Heart Center

Although we win awards for our emergency heart attack care, we hope you'll never need it. Our goal is to prevent and manage coronary artery disease and keep you healthy. We do this with:

  • A dedicated heart center. Our Zazulia Heart and Vascular Center has an inpatient unit just for heart patients. It features cardiac catheterization labs, a critical care unit and a cardiac rehabilitation center.

  • Nationally recognized care. The American College of Cardiology recognizes our commitment to hospital care for heart patients. We're one of 212 hospitals in the nation to receive the Platinum Performance Achievement Award for chest pain and heart attack care. And we appear on the 2022 U.S. News & World Report list of “Best Hospitals."

  • Heart treatments recognized by the American Heart Association. The American Heart Association identifies us as one of only 25% of U.S. hospitals qualified to perform emergency cardiac catheterization.

  • The latest technology for minimally invasive procedures. With advanced imaging, we can detect coronary artery disease early — and are often able to treat it with minimally invasive procedures. That means small incisions, less pain and a quicker recovery for you.

Preventive Care: Catching Coronary Artery Disease Early

Being proactive is your most powerful tool in preventing coronary artery disease. Make sure you get screened regularly and talk to your doctor about your risk. You can't change risk factors like age or family history. But you can reduce other risk factors with a heart-healthy lifestyle.

We recommend you:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.

  • Get regular exercise of at least 30 minutes most days of the week.

  • Eat a healthy diet with plenty of fiber from fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds.

  • Don't smoke.

  • Work with your health care provider to manage health conditions like high blood pressure or diabetes.

Coronary Artery Disease Diagnosis and Treatments

Coronary artery disease is often referred to as a silent killer because many people have no symptoms until it's too late. Our goal is to find and treat it early before it damages your heart.

Coronary artery disease tests and screening

All adults should have coronary artery disease screening with a primary care doctor starting at age 20. You may need to start earlier if you have a family history of heart disease. This screening includes:

  • Checking your blood pressure.

  • Doing blood tests to check your cholesterol, triglyceride and blood sugar levels.

  • Calculating your body mass index (BMI) and measuring your waist size.

Your doctor may recommend other tests if you have symptoms like chest pain, dizziness or shortness of breath when you exercise. If you don't have symptoms but are at high risk of coronary artery disease additional tests may include:

  • An EKG (electrocardiogram), to check your heartbeat.

  • A cardiac MRI, to check for problems with blood flow in your heart.

  • A cardiac CT scan, to see if you have calcium blocking your arteries.

  • Stress tests, to check how your heart works when you exercise.

  • A coronary angiography, to look inside your heart's arteries and check for clogs.

 

    Coronary artery disease treatments

    Early treatment is key to preventing heart damage or a heart attack. We can treat coronary artery disease with life-saving surgery and medicine.

    Surgical treatments for coronary artery disease

    We can do surgery for advanced coronary artery disease. Your doctor tells you which type of surgery is best for you, including:

    • Coronary angioplasty. This minimally invasive procedure improves blood flow to your heart. We place a thin tube (catheter) into a blood vessel in your groin or wrist. Next, we thread the catheter to the narrowed or blocked artery in your heart. Once in place, we inflate a tiny balloon at the tip of the catheter to open your artery and restore blood flow.

    • Stenting. We may put a small mesh tube, called a stent, in your artery during an angioplasty procedure. The stent helps to keep the blood vessel open.

    • Bypass surgery. Your surgeon might recommend this open surgery to fix blocked vessels in your heart. Here, we take a healthy vessel from another part of your body. Then, we connect the healthy vessel to bypass (or go around) the blocked section of the coronary artery. Bypass provides a new route for blood to flow to the heart muscle.

    Medical treatments for coronary artery disease

    Medicines treat the root cause of coronary artery disease so your heart can work better. They can:

    • Lower your blood pressure.

    • Allow your blood vessels to relax so blood can pass through more easily.

    • Reduce your heart's workload.

    • Control blood sugar because diabetes increases your risk of heart disease.

    • Lower your cholesterol or triglycerides.

    Support, Resources and Programs for Treating Coronary Artery Disease

    It's easier to keep your heart healthy when you have the right support and education. We're here for you with classes and programs in:

    • Heart-healthy eating.

    • Weight loss.

    • Fitness.

    • Smoking cessation.

    Next Steps & Contact

    Luminis Health Cardiology

    Primary Location

    2000 Medical Pkwy Ste 510, Annapolis, MD 21401

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