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Unpacking the Facts About Heart Disease: Understanding the Danger

heart disease

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. Every year, it kills hundreds of thousands of people. But what is heart disease, exactly? And what can be done to prevent it? In this article, we will discuss the facts about heart disease and its prevention.


Types of Heart Disease

Heart disease is an umbrella term that covers a variety of conditions, the most common being coronary artery disease (CAD). Other types of heart diseases include rheumatic heart disease—an infection caused by streptococcal bacteria—and cardiomyopathy—a condition characterized by weakened or damaged heart muscle.


Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

Coronary artery disease is a significant threat to public health worldwide. CAD occurs when fatty deposits build up in the walls of the arteries supplying blood to the heart. Symptoms can include chest pain, fatigue, and shortness of breath. To avoid coronary artery disease, it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle that includes an active routine and limiting smoking and alcohol intake as well as eating plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Exercise has been proven to reduce stress, lower bad cholesterol levels, improve blood pressure and strengthen the heart muscle overall which all help protect against this serious condition.



Arrythmia is a heart disease that affects heart rate, causing it to be too slow or too fast. It can result from existing heart conditions such as heart valve problems, heart attack, and heart failure, or from lifestyle habits including smoking, alcohol use, and drug abuse. Possible symptoms include dizziness, chest pain or pressure, shortness of breath, and palpitations or feeling like the heart is skipping beats. If untreated, arrythmia can lead to further heart damage and shortness of life expectancy so it is important to speak with your doctor if you think you may have this condition.



Cardiomyopathy is a heart disease that often goes undiagnosed, as it may show few or even no symptoms. This silent but serious condition affects heart muscle and results in the heart being unable to pump blood as efficiently as it should. Cardiomyopathy can cause various heart-related issues, ranging from abnormal heart rhythms and heart failure to heart valve problems and even sudden cardiac arrest. Thankfully, treatments exist to help manage symptoms, such as lifestyle changes and medications. Early diagnosis of the condition is key for improving outcomes, which involves regular screenings with your doctor. Being aware of your risk factors for cardiomyopathy can also help you keep an eye out for symptoms and make sure you receive appropriate care if needed.


Risk Factors

High blood pressure and high cholesterol are two major risk factors for developing any type of heart disease. Smoking, diabetes, obesity, physical inactivity, family history of early-onset heart disease, and age are also contributing factors.



Fortunately, heart disease is largely preventable with lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, quitting smoking, managing stress levels, and maintaining good oral hygiene. It is also important to get regular check-ups so any potential problems can be identified early on.


By understanding the facts about heart disease and taking steps to reduce your risk factors, you can make a positive impact on your health and well-being. If you have any questions or concerns about heart disease prevention, speak to your doctor call Sam Houston Heart & Vascular for more information. Taking proactive measures now can help create a healthier future for yourself.

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