Elevated cholesterol levels lead to atherosclerosis

Deposits of excess cholesterol damage the vascular wall, especially in arteries in which the oxygen-rich blood is transported from the heart to the organs. The originally elastic arteries become hard and calcified (atherosclerosis, hardening of the arteries)
This process does not happen overnight but develops slowly over many years. Scientists suspect that chronic inflammatory processes take place in the vessel wall.

The more LDL cholesterol settles and the arteries narrow, the worse the organs are supplied with blood and thus with oxygen and other nutrients. This process continues until the artery is completely closed and the corresponding body tissue is no longer supplied with blood. This in turn leads to the failure of the respective organ, which – depending on how important the organ is for the body – can be life-threatening.

Coronary heart disease
The heart is supplied with blood via three large arteries that surround the heart muscle in a ring. If there is an additional narrowing due to atherosclerosis, the supply of the heart muscle is at risk: the patient suffers from coronary artery disease.

Coronary artery disease can remain without symptoms, manifest itself in the form of painful chest tightness (angina pectoris), or, in the worst case, lead to a heart attack.

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Angina pectoris
Stop Cholesterol Angina Pectoris Atorvastatin20mg Lipid-Lowering Cholesterol-Lowering Drug Therapy Sortis LipitorAt rest, a patient will initially feel nothing of the coronary arteries constricted as a result of atherosclerosis. During physical exertion – that can be climbing stairs – the heart has to pump more blood through the coronary arteries but does not get enough oxygenated blood itself for this work.

Angina pectoris develops, which usually manifests itself in an oppressive, cramp-like pain in the middle of the chest, which can radiate into the shoulders, arms and back and is often associated with a strong feeling of fear.

Angina pectoris usually only lasts a few minutes and usually decreases quickly at rest / or after taking a drug such as nitroglycerin.

Heart attack
A heart attack also causes similar complaints. Here the oxygen shortage in a muscle area of ​​the heart is so great that the tissue dies and the heart loses its pumping power.

The larger the area that dies due to the undersupply, the more extensive the infarction and the greater the risk for the person affected. The cause is the maximum constriction of a coronary vessel due to atherosclerosis or – much more often – the closure of the constriction by a blood clot (thrombus).

stroke
The brain can suffer a similar fate: if blood vessels in the brain are blocked, the undersupplied tissue dies; the result is a cerebral infarction or stroke.

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Arterial circulation disorder of the legs
Stop Cholesterol Arterial Circulation Disorders Atherosclerosis Intermittent Claustrophobia Statins Lipid-Lowering Cholesterol-Lowering Atorvastatin20mg Sortis LipitorThe legs can also be affected if atherosclerotic changes have narrowed the arteries in the legs. When moving, the muscles no longer receive enough oxygen, so that after a few meters you have to stop because of pain and rest until you can continue walking. One, therefore, speaks of “intermittent claudication”.

The more cholesterol, the greater the risk
The more cholesterol, the greater the risk: This is especially true for coronary heart disease. The occurrence of diseases of the coronary arteries and their subsequent complications are related to the level of cholesterol in the blood: the higher the total cholesterol level, especially the LDL cholesterol concentration, and the lower the values ​​for protective HDL cholesterol, the greater the risk of coronary events.
In addition to increased cholesterol levels, there are other important risk factors for the development of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases. These include increased blood pressure, smoking, being overweight, diabetes mellitus, and a sedentary lifestyle.

high blood pressure
Years of high blood pressure damage the blood vessels in the long term and thus accelerate the development of atherosclerosis. In addition, the heart has to do constant extra work due to the increased pressure.

Smoke
Stop Cholesterol Smoking Smoke Cigarette Artherosclerosis Lung Diseases Atorvastatin20mg SortisNicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke are also vascular killers. They damage the inner wall of the arteries and promote fat storage in the vascular wall. Nicotine also leads to a narrowing of the vessels and thus to reduced blood circulation. The increased blood flow caused by smoking often leads to the so-called smoker’s leg.

diabetes
The latter also applies to a constantly increased blood sugar level in diabetes mellitus, which damages the inner layer of the small blood vessels and accelerates the storage of fat and calcium substances in the vascular wall, i.e. atherosclerosis.

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Obesity
If you are overweight, the heart has to pump more efficiently, and overeating is usually caused by an increased intake of fat and sugar. The result is an increase in blood lipid levels with the known consequences.

Combined Risks
Stop Cholesterol Atherosclerosis Fitness Fit Slim Healthy Sports Running Atorvastatin20mg Sortis LipitorUnfortunately, the risk factors mentioned are often combined with one another, which increases the extent of atherosclerosis and the resulting cardiovascular diseases. Overweight people often have high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels.

Therefore: The best precaution for fitness and health is the reduction and / the treatment of individual risk factors.

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Disclaimer

The contents of this page are intended for informational purposes only. They are not suitable for professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors or. to replace other healthcare professionals. Nor can they be a substitute for a personal examination or a personal interview.

The information provided does not represent recommendations or evaluations of diagnostic or therapeutic procedures or other options but is for your personal information.

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