Evaluation of Coronary Artery Disease

The coronary arteries are the tubes through which blood flows to the heart muscle and provides it the energy to pump. When the coronary arteries become diseased or blocked, chest pain, shortness of breath, and a variety of other symptoms may be produced. If left uncorrected, these blockages may result in a heart attack (“myocardial infarction”), which in turn can result in permanent disability or even death. In fact, heart disease is the number one cause of death in men and women. Screening for and treatment of coronary artery disease (with medications and cardiac procedures such as diagnostic angiography, also known as cardiac catheterization, coronary artery angioplasty and stenting to open clogged arteries) is the domain of the cardiologist, and all patients with coronary artery disease should see a cardiologist regularly.