What is angina pectoris?
Angina pectoris is when a part of your heartmuscle doesn’t get enough oxygen. It’s a symptom of a coronary heartdisease (CHD). Angina Pectoris is Latin: pectoris is the Latin word for ‘breast’ and Angina is the Latin word for ‘narrowing’. Your coronary arteries don’t get enough blood, because the coronary arteries are very narrow. Angina itself is no disease, but it can warn you for a Coronary Heart Disease (above). People (male and female) can get it after their 40th birthday.
What are the symptoms of angina pectoris?
- a pressing pain behind your breastbone that doens’t go away after a few (2-15) minutes
- you can’t breath easily and you sweat a lot
- you can look white
- back, neck, or jaw pain
Different kinds of angina pectoris:
There are 2 different types of angina pectoris: stable and unstable. The stable angina pectoris is the most common. This is when the blood doens’t flow well anymore, and then there mostly more narrowings in the coronary arteries. The unstable angina pectoris is not so common. This is more when there is a lot of pain and very heavy, and that doens’t go away anymore, so you have to go to the hospital very quick! The term unstable angina pectoris is also used when you have the symptoms of a heart attack, but test in the hospital don’t say that.
How can angina pectoris be formed?
Angina pectoris can be formed by different causes. Some are: smoking (most important one), alcohol, emotional stress, high weight, high cholesterol or arteriosclerosis. On the left side you see an picture of angina. You see that the coronary vessel is blocked, it’s very narrow.
Are there good medicins for angina pectoris?
Well, there are a few options what you can do if you have angina. There are medicins called ‘Nitrobaat’. Everybody that has angina pectoris has also tablets or spray called ‘nitroglycerine’. If that doens’t work, you have to be examined in the hospital. There they can make a ECG scan, where they can see your heart. An other option is that a patient can have a bypassoperation. In that operation you can take a ‘fake’ coronary vessel. You can only do that if you have only one narrowing. If you have more than that, it’s not possible. An other option is ‘dotteren’. In English that’s called ‘perfrom percutaneous angioplasty’. When they do that, the patient receives first a local anaesthestic. After that they’ll put a hose in an artery. Under the x-ray scan, they squirt contrast-fluid in you by that hose, so that they can see your bloodvessels, and then to see if the hose is on the right place. There’s also a balloon on the hose and when the hose lies correct, they blow up the balloon, so that the narrowing goes away. You can also decrease the change to get an ‘attack’ of angina pectoris, by doing the following thing:
- stop smoking
- eat healthy and variated
- use less fats and salt
- do enough exercise
- try to live with not so much stress
Can you get a heart attack when you have angina pectoris?
Well, an episode of angina pectoris is not inmediadly an heart attack. Angina pectoris only means that your heart didn’t get enough oxygen for a while, when the heart has to pump harder. Episodes of angina pectoris almost never give permanent heart damage. The only thing is that people that have angina pectoris have a bigger risk for a heart attack, but it’s not a sign that you’ll get a heart attack.
Can people with angina pectoris do exercises?
Yes. It is very important to work with your doctor on an exercise plan. It sounds a bit strange, but exercise may increase the level of pain-free activity, stress and it improves the heart’s blood supply. Somebody with angina pectoris can only start with the doctor’s advice. First you can start with a 5-minute walk and increase in a few weeks to 30 minutes and then an hour. The most doctors tell them that the have to build it up, but I think that’s logical.
Angina and angina pectoris:
There is a big difference between angina and angina pectoris. Only angina is pain in your throat!!! That’s why I always typed angina pectoris. The causes like smoking and alcohol are the same, but it’s really something else. And angina goes away after a few weeks, and angina pectoris you have forever! So it’s very important that you don’t interchange this ones!