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Coronary Artery Disease Signs and Symptoms

Coronary artery disease occurs when the main blood vessels that supply the heart with blood become damaged or diseased.  The arteries are usually damaged by excess cholesterol-containing deposits called plaques, which build up on the walls of the arteries.  When the build-up of plaques becomes severe, the arteries become narrower and may even become completely blocked.  The result is often a heart attack.  We have put together a list of common signs and symptoms of coronary artery disease below.

Also, we have information on diagnosis, helpful books and valuable resources for patients.

The Most Common Signs and Symptoms of Coronary Artery Disease include:

  • Chest pain (angina) accompanied by sweating, uneasiness and fear
  • Heart attack
  • Shortness of breath
  • Extreme fatigue

Angina is the most important coronary artery disease symptom.  Angina is a feeling of pressure or tightness in the chest, radiating to the inner side of the left arm, shoulder and back.  The pain can be brought on by physical exertion, emotional stress, eating a heavy meal, or walking in cold weather.

Coronary artery blockage is one of the main causes of a heart attack.  One or more of the coronary arteries may be partially or completely blocked, resulting in sudden cardiac arrest or even death.

Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease

Tests that are often used to diagnose coronary artery disease include an MRI to check for blockages in the arteries, a CT scan, coronary catheterization to view blood flow through your heart, an electrocardiogram (ECG) and an echocardiogram.  If your signs and symptoms of coronary artery disease occur most often during exercise, the doctor may perform an exercise stress test.

Books For People With Signs and Symptoms of Coronary Artery Disease

Healing the Heart: A Spiritual Approach to Reversing Coronary Artery Disease (Chopra, Deepak. Perfect Health Library.)
Deepak Chopra
The Female Heart: The Truth About Women and Coronary Artery Disease
Marianne J. Legato

Coronary Artery Disease:Essentials of Prevention & Rehab Programs
Leonard A. Kaminsky
Coronary Artery Disease: An Incredibly Easy! Miniguide

Coronary Artery Disease Resources

General Patient Resources

  • Cleveland Clinic

Understanding coronary artery disease – Cleveland Clinic Heart & Vascular Institute, leader in heart care and heart disease in the United States.

  • Med Help

MedHelp’s Coronary Artery Disease Center for Information, Symptoms, Resources, Treatments and Tools for Coronary Artery Disease.

  • Revolution Health

A forum for the coronary artery disease community.

  • Vascular Solutions, Inc.

Vascular Solutions patient resources about coronary artery disease.

  • About . com

In-depth report on coronary artery disease.

Medical Resources

  • Mayo Clinic

Comprehensive overview covers symptoms, treatment of this serious heart condition.

  • Medline Plus

A service of the US National library of Medicine.

  • Pub Med Health

Reviews causes, symptoms, risk factors, treatment, prognosis and complications.