Angina is a common heart disease that affects several people. It is a common coronary artery disease that can affect anyone without prior warning. It affects both young professionals and middle aged people to a large extent.

Common causes of Angina

Under normal circumstances, Angina is caused when normal blood flow to the heart is affected. This can affect either a part of the heart or the entire organ. Eventually, this decreased or restricted blood flow affects the delivery of natural oxygen or essential nutrients to the heart muscle cells. When this occurs it is important for alternative means in terms of medication or treatment to arrange the required blood flow to the rest of the body and heart. Decreased and restricted blood flow affects the heart’s normal ability to function properly.

The various types of Angina

Angina by itself is a heart disease that affects blood flow. However, there are various kinds of Angina that may cause other health problems too.

Stable Angina

Stable Angina is a condition wherein the restricted blood flow causes immense pain in the heart only during extreme physical exertion and activities. Patients may also experience discomfort during emotional stress. After a prolonged or temporary period of rest the pain usually disappears. This is why patients suffering from Stable Angina are often advised rest and are advised to avoid strenuous physical or mental activities.

Unstable Angina

Unstable Angina is a more serious form of Angina that might signal a heart attack in certain cases. The pain felt during Unstable Angina is similar to that of Stable Angina but can occur even during rest. This pain can be felt even during moments of relaxation or no physical activity and may last for long periods of time. Although it can be controlled with regular medication, in most cases it can lead to heart attacks over time. When a person suffers from Unstable Angina intense medication is required and the patient should be under constant observation.

Prinzmetal’s Angina

In Prinzmetal’s Angina, a patient may experience severe pain while at rest or when exposed to extreme temperatures, normally extreme cold temperatures. These spasms due to restricted or decreased blood flow to the heart may occur due to blockages or due to an existing heart condition.

Typical symptoms of Angina

  • Angina is often characterized by extreme pain and discomfort in the chest area. Patients may experience an extreme heavy feeling in the chest and heart, severe aching and burning sensations, an uncomfortable fullness, sudden squeezing, feelings similar to indigestion.
  • Under most conditions, Angina pain is usually felt in the chest area but can affect the rest of the upper body like shoulders, arms, neck, throat, jaw etc.
  • If you are already on heart medication and suffer from pain in the chest, it is important to inform your doctor immediately.
  • When a patient experiences any of these symptoms it is important to inform a doctor immediately. Although these conditions or symptoms may sometimes even be diagnosed as indigestion or stress pain, if there is chance that it involves a heart problem immediate hospitalization or medical treatment will be required.