Arteriosclerosis / Atherosclerosis
Arteriosclerosis occurs when your arteries become stiff and thickened. Stiff and thick arteries will restrict blood flow to the rest of your body. Atherosclerosis is a specific type of arteriosclerosis, and it occurs when your arteries have a build-up of plaque, which can narrow and stiffen your arteries and restrict blood flow to the rest of your body. The plaque can break off the artery walls and cause a blood clot. Arteriosclerosis and atherosclerosis can manifest differently in different arteries, but it can lead to chest pain, high blood pressure, kidney failure, leg pain, and more.
Your doctor may treat arteriosclerosis with medications that can slow down or reverse its effects. These medications include cholesterol medications, beta blockers, anti-platelet medications, ACE inhibitors, and diuretics. They work by reducing plaque buildup, lowering your heart rate, reducing clotting, or lowering your blood pressure. Your doctor may also perform an angioplasty – in this procedure, a stent is inserted to the blocked part of your artery. The stent will widen the artery and keep it open, improving blood flow to the rest of your body.