- by Dr. Sunil Dwivedi
- 0 Shares
- Mar 18 2017
Symptoms of hardening and narrowing of the arteries-ATHEROSCLEROSIS
The process of atherosclerosis is a gradual one. Mild atherosclerosis usually doesn't have any symptoms. The symptoms of atherosclerosis don't develop until an artery is so narrowed or clogged that it can't supply adequate blood to your organs and tissues. In extreme circumstances, a blood clot blocks blood flow completely, or even breaks apart and can trigger a heart attack or stroke.
Moderate to severe atherosclerosis can lead to symptoms dependingupon which arteries are affected. For example:
- Atherosclerosis in your heart arteries can lead to symptoms such as chest pain or pressure (angina).
- Atherosclerosis in the arteries leading to your brain can lead to signs and symptoms such as sudden numbness or weakness in your arms or legs, difficulty speaking or slurred speech, or drooping muscles in your face. All these symptoms are temporary and point towards a diagnosis of a transient ischemic attack (TIA) — which, if left untreated — may progress to a stroke.
- Atherosclerosis in the arteries in your arms and legs can lead to symptoms of peripheral artery disease, such as leg pain when walking (intermittent claudication).
- Atherosclerosis in the arteries leading to your kidneys can lead to development of high blood pressure or kidney failure.
- Atherosclerosis in the arteries leading to your genitals can cause difficulties in having sexual intercourse. Atherosclerosis is an important cause of erectile dysfunction in men. In women, high blood pressure can reduce blood flow to the vagina, making sexual intercourse less pleasurable.
If somebody feels he/she has above symptoms pointing towards atherosclerosis, it is important to meet a doctor. One should also be vigilant about early symptoms of inadequate blood flow, such as chest pain (angina), leg pain or numbness. The patients must understand that early diagnosis and treatment can stop atherosclerosis from worsening and prevent a heart attack, stroke or another medical emergency.
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