Your arteries are like your body’s freeway system, allowing oxygen-rich blood to flow from your heart to the rest of your body. When an artery becomes blocked due to the buildup of plaques made of substances such as fats, cholesterol, and calcium, your blood can no longer flow freely.
The condition, known as atherosclerosis, is very common. After age 40, even if you’re in generally good health, you have a roughly 50% chance of developing it. And that risk increases over time.
Our team of qualified experts at Arundel Medical Group, Inc. in Glen Burnie, Maryland, offers on-site echocardiograms, so you won’t have to wait or spend added time at multiple locations and appointments. Read on to learn more about blocked arteries, including common signs.
Atherosclerosis develops gradually, typically over years or decades. Symptoms typically appear during the advanced stage, when blood flow isn’t merely slowed, but interrupted. While most anyone can develop blocked arteries, factors that increase your risk include:
Artery blockages affect people differently and occur in varying degrees. While a 97%-blocked artery is far easier to treat than a fully blocked artery, they can present in similar ways.
Depending on which artery is blocked, symptoms may include:
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, call our office right away.
If our team at Arundel Medical Group, Inc. suspects you have one or more blocked arteries, we’ll likely recommend an echocardiogram.
For this test, an echo tech attaches sticky electrodes to your skin while you lie on an exam table. The echo tech then applies a special gel to help the soundwaves to move through your skin as they move a handheld device over your chest. Those soundwaves help measure your heart’s activity. From there, images are produced and analyzed by our medical team.
In addition to clogged arteries, the echocardiogram can help your team diagnose or assess other conditions, such as blood clots, bulging arteries, and buildup of fluid or blood in your legs due to leaking valves. Once we have a clear idea as to the cause of your symptoms, we’ll recommend an effective treatment plan.
To learn more about blocked arteries or get the care you need, call our office or request an appointment on our website.