Signs of Coronary Artery Disease

Heart disease is well-known as the leading cause of death worldwide, and coronary artery is arguably the most common type of heart disease in the United States. Coronary arteries are the arteries that supply the heart with oxygen and nutrients. They can accumulate plaque and become narrow, just like other arteries in your body. The blockage of coronary arteries is called coronary artery disease, also known as coronary heart disease (CAD).

In this brief article brought to you by Cardiovascular Specialists of York, we introduce you to the threat of CAD, share some signs of this prevalent heart disease, and touch on common treatment options.

If you’d rather consult with a licensed cardiologist, then call Cardiovascular Specialists of York to schedule an appointment or arrange a walk-in for as soon as possible. Our team is here to take your call or message today.

What is Coronary Artery Disease?

The primary threat of coronary artery disease is its critical disruption in the cardiovascular system. The coronary arteries, responsible for nourishing the heart muscle with oxygen and vital nutrients, can succumb to a process known as atherosclerosis. This condition involves the buildup of plaque, composed of cholesterol, calcium, and other substances, within the arterial walls. Over time, this plaque buildup can lead to the narrowing and hardening of the arteries, effectively restricting blood flow to the heart muscle.

Symptoms and Signs of Coronary Artery Disease

Coronary artery disease often manifests in a variety of symptoms and signs, each serving as a warning signal of potential cardiac issues. Common symptoms include:

  • Chest Pain: One of the hallmark symptoms of CAD is angina, characterized by a discomfort or pressure in the chest. This pain may radiate to the arms, neck, jaw, shoulders, or back and is often triggered by physical exertion or emotional stress.
  • Shortness of Breath: As the coronary arteries narrow, the heart may struggle to receive an adequate supply of oxygen-rich blood. This can result in breathlessness, especially during physical activity or periods of stress.
  • Fatigue and Weakness: Reduced blood flow to the heart muscle can also lead to feelings of fatigue and weakness.
  • Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction): In rare cases, a severe blockage of a coronary artery can result in a heart attack. This presents with symptoms such as intense chest pain, sweating, nausea, and shortness of breath.

Treating Coronary Artery Disease

Managing coronary artery disease requires a comprehensive approach aimed at reducing symptoms, preventing complications, and improving overall heart health. Treatment options may include:

  • Lifestyle Modifications: This includes regular exercise, a balanced diet low in saturated fats and cholesterol, smoking cessation, and weight management.
  • Medications: Various medications may be prescribed to address specific aspects of CAD, such as reducing cholesterol levels, controlling blood pressure, preventing blood clots, and relieving symptoms like angina.
  • Interventional Procedures: In cases where medication and lifestyle changes are insufficient, interventional procedures such as angioplasty and stenting may be recommended. These procedures involve opening blocked arteries to restore blood flow to the heart.
  • Surgery: For severe cases of CAD, coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery may be necessary. This procedure involves creating new pathways for blood flow by using blood vessels from other parts of the body to bypass blocked arteries.

When to Consult a Licensed Cardiologist

Accurately navigating the complexities of coronary artery disease requires the expertise of a licensed heart doctor. Timely medical attention is quite literally a matter of life and death. Residents in the area who are concerned about CAD symptoms can call Cardiovascular Specialists of York to schedule an appointment or request urgent assistance.


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Sylvia Savoie

Hanover, PA

My mom was seen by Dr. Gilbert. She was treated like a queen. Treated her with respect and dignity and took his time even going through writing the information down so she would have the paper. I can’t say enough and the staff at the Cardiovascular Specialist of York clinic was great and friendly.

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Joann Bernard

York, PA

Dr. Gilbert provided excellent service. Both personable and professional. Went above and beyond to provide detailed explanations that I could readily understand. I've never felt more comfortable and better served. If you need a cardiologist in town, I strongly recommend seeing Dr. Gilbert.

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Karen Canzoneri

Pennville, PA

Excellent experience. Dr. Gilbert gave me a wealth of information about taking good care of myself.  I went into this appointment a little worried but came out relieved after his clear explanation and valuable health tips. If you are looking for the best cardiologist in town look no further than Cardiovascular Specialists of York.

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