Atherosclerosis, is a disease in which plaque builds up inside the arteries (the blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood to your heart and other parts of your body). The cause of this can be either due to smoking, excess alcohol intake, not eating fruits and vegetables, abdominal obesity, stress, not exercising regularly, high amounts of certain fats and cholesterol in the blood, high blood pressure, and high amounts of sugar in the blood (due to insulin resistance or diabetes). Overtime, plaque hardens and narrows the arteries which results into a limitation of the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the organs and other parts of the human body. Atherosclerosis can affect any artery in the human body including the arteries in the brain, heart, arms, legs, pelvis, and kidneys. Atherosclerosis is known as the usual cause of heart attacks and strokes. As a result of Atherosclerosis different diseases may develop such as Coronary Artery Disease, Carotid Artery Disease, Peripheral Artery Disease, Cerebrovascular Disease, and Chronic Kidney Disease.

What Are the Symptoms?

Symptoms may depend on which arteries are affected. There are many symptoms of Atherosclerosis:

For Coronary Arteries the Symptoms Are:

  • Heart Attack
  • Stroke
  • Angina (squeezing/pressure in your chest, shoulders, arms, neck, jaw, or back.)
  • Indigestion
  • Poor sleeping habits.
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue (lack of energy)

For Carotid Arteries the Symptoms Are:

  • Sudden weakness
  • Paralysis or numbness of the face, arms, or legs (especially on one side of the body).
  • Confusion
  • Trouble speaking or understanding speech
  • Trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Problems breathing
  • Dizziness, trouble walking, loss of balance / coordination, and unexplained falls.
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Sudden and severe headaches

For Peripheral Arteries the Symptoms Are:

  • Numbness in the legs, arms, and/or pelvis.
  • Pain in the legs, arms, and/or pelvis.
  • Dangerous infections

For Renal Arteries the Symptoms Are:

  • Tiredness
  • Changes in urination (more / less frequent)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Swelling in the hands or feet
  • Itchiness / Numbness
  • Having trouble to concentrate

Conventional Management

There are different ways to treat Atherosclerosis. Treatments vary from heart-healthy lifestyle changes to medicines to medical procedures / surgery. The goals of treating Atherosclerosis include:

  • Lowering the risk of blood clots forming.
  • Preventing Atherosclerosis-related diseases.
  • Reducing the risk factors in an effort to slow / stop the buildup of plaque.
  • Relieving symptoms of Atherosclerosis.
  • Widening / bypassing plaque-clogged arteries.

Surgical treatments for those who suffer from Atherosclerosis include:

  • Percutaneous Coronary Intervention
  • Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting
  • Bypass Grafting
  • Carotid Endarterectomy
  • Fibrinolytic Therapy

Medication therapy for those who suffer from Atherosclerosis include:

  • Cholesterol medications
  • Anti-platelet medications
  • Beta-blocker medications
  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Water pills (diuretics)

Alternative Approaches

Proper Hormonal Balance is one effective method of minimizing and possibly reversing atherosclerosis. Testosterone therapy in both men and woman can reduce lipid abnormalities and prevent cardiovascular disease. There is also evidence that Human Growth Hormone can help normalize lipid profiles and thus decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease in patients whose hormone levels are maintained in a healthy range.

Atherosclerosis is a form of inflammation of the lining of blood vessels. Decreasing inflammation with anti-oxidant therapy in any form such as IV Vitamin therapy, use of the UVLRx or Ozone can be helpful in decreasing inflammation. Finding the right nutritional balance for you also can decrease atherosclerosis. 

References:

  1. Explore Atherosclerosis.” National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. S. Department of Health & Human Services, 22 May 2014. Web.
  2. Atherosclerosis.” American Heart Association. p., 21 Apr. 2014. Web.
  3. What Is Atherosclerosis?” N.p., 7 May 2016. Web.
  4. Mayo Clinic Staff. “Arteriosclerosis / Atherosclerosis.” Mayo Clinic. Np., 31 Dec. 2015. W

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