Atherosclerosis:

Atherosclerosis:

It is a condition of the arteries that is characterized by the thickening of the walls of the arteries and blockage of arteries by the formation of plaques. Arterial blood vessels carry oxygenated blood from the heart to all the cells and tissues of the body. Atherosclerosis is a slow and progressive condition that might start even from the childhood. It might aggravate mid-age due to high cholesterol levels and triglycerides, hypertension, and smoking. Sedentary lifestyles, and other problems also contribute to the development of atherosclerosis. In people who smoke, atherosclerosis develops in the aorta, coronary arteries, and the peripheral arteries (arteries in the legs). Atherosclerosis is also known to be caused due to diabetes because diabetes damages the blood vessels. Symptoms of atherosclerosis depend upon the arteries affected by the condition. If the coronary arteries are damaged, people experience chest pain, anxiety, vomiting, and feeling faint. If the condition is in the carotid arteries, the symptoms would be difficulty breathing, paralysis, weakness, numbness in the face, and headache. In atherosclerosis of the peripheral arteries, symptoms would show up in the form of impotence, leg numbness, leg weakness, change of color in the leg, hair loss in the leg, and toenails getting thicker. In atherosclerosis of renal arteries, one would get symptoms of swelling in the legs and arms, difficulty concentrating, and lack of appetite. It is diagnosed by a blood test, Doppler ultrasound, ankle-brachial index, ECG, angiogram, CT-scan, and MRI. Treatment is given in the form of cholesterol medication, beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, and other medications.

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