PREVIOUS QUESTION:

 

NEXT QUESTION:

 

How can a blocked artery bring on a heart attack?

ANSWER

Heart muscle needs a supply of oxygen-rich blood, and if the coronary arteries that provide it get narrow, blood can’t flow very well. Fatty matter, calcium, proteins, and inflammatory cells can form plaques in the arteries.

With plaque buildup, less oxygen gets to heart muscle, and that can bring chest pain.

If the surface of the plaque cracks, clots can form around it -- like a scab. If a clot blocks the artery, heart muscle cells die, causing permanent damage. This is a heart attack.

From: Heart Disease and Heart Attacks WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by James Beckerman on November 05, 2018
Reviewed by James Beckerman on November 05, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

How can an artery spasm bring on a heart attack?

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.