Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the narrowing or blockage of the coronary arteries, usually caused by atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis (sometimes called “hardening” or “clogging” of the arteries) is the build up of cholesterol and fatty deposits (called plaques) on the inner walls of the arteries. These plaques can restrict blood flow to the heart muscle by physically clogging the artery or by causing abnormal artery tone and function.
Without an adequate blood supply, the heart becomes starved of oxygen and the vital nutrients it needs to work properly. This can cause chest pain called angina. If blood supply to a portion of the heart muscle is cut off entirely, or if the energy demands of the heart become much greater than its blood supply, a heart attack (injury to the heart muscle) may occur.
Patients with CHD are offered an annual review in the nurse led heart clinic with our cardiac nurse, usually in the month of their birthday. Here we will support you in managing your heart condition to ensure that the quality of your health remains well, in order to reduce your risk of death, heart attacks and hospital admissions. We will review your risk factors, discuss lifestyle changes, review your medications, perform relevant blood tests and arm you with the knowledge you need to manage your condition.
If you have CHD see these information leaflets: