Do You have symptoms of Angina-Part -2
Angina questions for your doctor
- Do I need any more tests?
- What type of angina do I have?
- Do I have heart damage?
- What treatment do you recommend?
- How will it make me feel?
- What can I do to try to prevent a heart attack?
- Are there activities I shouldn't do?
- Will changing my diet help?
Your treatment depends on how much damage there is to your heart. For people with mild angina, medicine and lifestyle changes can often help their blood flow better and control their symptoms.
Your doctor might prescribe medicines including:
- Nitrates or calcium channel blockers to relax and widen blood vessels, letting more blood flow to your heart
- Beta-blockers to slow your heart down so it doesn't have to work as hard
- Blood thinners or antiplatelet medications to prevent blood clots
- Statins to lower your cholesterol levels and stabilize plaque
- If meds aren't enough, you may need to have blocked arteries opened with a medical procedure or surgery. This could be:
- Angioplasty/stenting. The doctor threads a tiny tube, with a balloon inside, through a blood vessel and up to your heart. Then, they inflate the balloon inside the narrowed artery to widen it and restore blood flow. They may insert a small tube called a stent inside your artery to help keep it open. The stent is permanent and usually made of metal. It can also be made of a material that your body absorbs over time. Some stents also have medicine that helps keep your artery from getting blocked again.
- The procedure usually takes less than 2 hours. You’ll probably stay overnight at the hospital.
- Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), or bypass surgery. Your surgeon takes healthy arteries or veins from another part of your body and uses them to go around the blocked or narrowed blood vessels.
- You can expect to stay in the hospital for about a week after you have this. You'll be in the intensive care unit for a day or two while nurses and doctors keep a close eye on your heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen levels. You'll then move to a regular room to recover.
- Lifestyle changes
You can still be active, but it's important to listen to your body. If you feel pain, stop what you’re doing and rest. Know what triggers your angina, like stress or intense exercise. Try to avoid things that tend to set it off. For example, if large meals cause problems, eat smaller ones and eat more often. If you still feel pain, talk to your doctor about having more tests or changing your medications. Because angina can be a sign of something dangerous, it’s important to get checked out.
- These lifestyle tips may help protect your heart:
- If you smoke, stop. It can damage your blood vessels and increase your heart disease risk.
- Eat a heart-healthy diet to lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. When those are out of normal range, your chance for heart disease can arise. Eat mainly fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish, lean meat, and fat-free or low-fat dairy. Limit salt, fat, and sugar.
- Use stress-relieving measures like meditation, deep breathing, or yoga to relax.
- Exercise most days of the week.
- See your doctor regularly.
If you have chest pain that is new or unusual for you, and you think you may be having a heart attack, call 911 right away. Quick treatment is very important. It can protect you from more damage.
- Angina raises your risk of having a heart attack. But it’s treatable. Consider it a warning sign and make healthy choices.
- Talk with others who have it. That may help you learn how to feel better.
- Your family, too, may need support to help them understand your angina. They'll want to know what they can do to help.