What is heart disease?
Heart disease refers to a range of conditions that affect the heart, including coronary artery disease, arrhythmias and congenital heart defects. Cardiovascular disease is synonymous with heart disease, and it refers to conditions that involve blocked or narrowed blood vessels that lead to chest pains, stroke or a heart attack. Other heart conditions can affect your heart’s rhythm, muscle or valves. With healthy lifestyle choices, many heart diseases can be treated or prevented.
What are the signs and symptoms?
The symptoms of heart disease depend on the type that you have. Additionally, symptoms may be different for men and women, as women are more likely to develop other symptoms along with chest pains, including extreme fatigue, shortness of breath and nausea. Regardless of the type of disease you have, the most common symptoms include:
- Chest pains (tightness, pressure and discomfort)
- Shortness of breath
- Swelling in the lower part of the body (legs, ankles, feet)
- Dizziness or fainting
What are the causes?
Heart diseases are caused by congenital heart defects, coronary artery disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, smoking, drug abuse, stress, certain over-the-counter medications and cardiomyopathy (an enlarging or thickening of the heart muscle). Bacteria, viruses and parasites can all cause a heart infection and lead to a more serious disease.
Schedule an appointment in Fairbanks, Alaska
Given the relationship between heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure, it is important to eat healthy and get plenty of exercise. Getting the right medical advice is also ideal. To improve your heart health and increase your life expectancy, request an appointment at our medical practice in Fairbanks.* Request an appointment online or give us a call at (907) 451-1174.
*Individual results may vary; not a guarantee.