Coronary artery disease is the most common cardiovascular affliction in our society, and is the leading cause of death. It is a problem of decreased blood flow and oxygen delivery, because of narrowed arteries.Atherosclerosis is the process of the narrowing, and describes plaque buildup on the lining of the arteries. This plaque buildup is made of calcium, fats, metals, and immune cells. If the plaque is subject to stress and inflammation, it may become avulnerable plaque, rupture, and cause a clot that leads to a heart attack.
•Coronary artery disease can be silent without symptoms until it is too late.
•Angina is pain that can be localized to the left side of the chest, or it may refer pain to the shoulder, arm, right chest, jaw, or neck. It is usually associated with exertion and exercise. If the pain persists for more than 15 minutes, there is a chance an actual heart attack may be happening.
•If arteries other than those that feed the heart are involved, there may be leg pain on walking (intermittent claudication), or vascular dementia, transient ischemic attack, or stroke
•Heart attack symptoms include severe chest pain, nausea, sweating. Females may experience fatigue and a sense of gloom.
Tests for an actual heart attack in-occurrence are done in the ER. This may include an ECG and blood tests to check for proteins that leak into the blood stream during a heart attack. For patients at risk of coronary artery disease, heart attacks, and strokes, see the newsletter on testing and treating heart disease.
•Nutritional and herbal medications can be used to relax the muscular artery walls, decrease positive risk factors, decrease the thickness of blood, and prevent further plaque from building up.
•Exercise and diet changes can further reduce risk and help to maintain benefits from treatment.
•Chelation therapy can improve the circulation in smaller vessels, and improve nitric oxide function to improve blood flow. It removes lead, which is a poison for the enzyme (nitric oxide synthase). This enzyme creates your body's natural "nitroglycerin", to relax artery walls. If the plaque has heavy metal, then chelation may be very effective at removing the plaque build-up. A recent study of 14,000 patients showed that elevated blood lead, even at 1/20th the normal reference range, can lead to a 2x increased risk of stroke.
•Plaquex therapy can be used to replace old, friable lipids in the heart and arteries with healthy younger lipids. It can also be used to reduce calcification in large plaques.
•Oxidative therapy has the most research of all the aggressive naturopathic therapies that shows decreased angina, leg pain, blood pressure, and improved survival. This involves either ultraviolet blood irradiation or ozone by major autohemotherapy (most researched), or dilute hydrogen peroxide IV (most cost-effective).