Former President George Bush underwent a procedure earlier today to place a coronary stent in a blocked coronary artery in his heart. The coronary stent will keep the artery open to allow adequate blood flow in his heart.
The blockage was discovered during Bush's annual physical exam at the Cooper Clinic in Texas, reports Fox News. The procedure was performed at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital," according to a statement.
Patients who undergo stent placements must take oral anticoagulants (blood thinners) for life to keep blood clots from forming around the stents. Patients are at risk of stroke from blood clots and a buildup of white blood cells around the stent. Coronary stents are typically used to prevent heart attacks in people who are diagnosed with Coronary Artery Disease caused by Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries or clogged arteries).
Atherosclerosis means hardening or clogging of the arteries caused by fat deposits or plaque (cholesterol and other fat) on the walls of the arteries. It is the main cause of heart attacks, strokes and chest pain. The buildup of plaque attracts white blood cells to the area which causes inflammation that precipitates the hardening and thickening of the artery walls over time.
Although both sexes can be diagnosed with Atherosclerosis, the disease is mainly diagnosed in men over age 45.
Atherosclerosis is a disease that can progress for many years without any symptoms until the artery is 40% clogged by plaque. Symptoms vary depending upon the location inside the body where the artery is clogged.
Symptoms may include:
Atherosclerosis risk factors include hereditary (family history of cardiovascular disease), smoking cigarettes, hypertension (high blood pressure), Diabetes, poor dietary habits (high trans fat, high cholesterol, high salt diets). Studies show that people with low HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) and high LDL (bad cholesterol) are at high risk of developing Atherosclerosis (clogged arteries).
This has been your Medical Minute.
More Info On the Web
What is Atherosclerosis? - WebMD
Arteriosclerosis / atherosclerosis - Mayo Clinic
What Causes Atherosclerosis? - Medical News Today
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