What is Heart Disease?
“Heart disease” refers to a range of conditions that affect the structure or function of your heart. Types of heart disease include:
- Coronary artery disease (CAD) – Plaque (cholesterol) buildup that narrows the coronary arteries and affects blood flow within the heart
- Congenital heart disease – Heart problems present at birth
- Dilated cardiomyopathy – Widened heart chambers due to a weakened heart muscle, meaning the heart isn’t pumping blood as it should
- Heart attack
- Heart failure
- Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy – Genetic disorder that thickens the heart’s left ventricle wall, making it harder for blood to pump through
- Mitral valve prolapse or regurgitation – Failure of a heart valve to close tightly, allowing blood to flow back into the heart
- Pulmonary stenosis – Narrowed heart valve that doesn’t pump blood properly from the right ventricle into the pulmonary artery
Causes & Risk Factors for Heart Disease
You cannot prevent some risk factors for heart disease, such as family history, age and heart problems you are born with.
But you can ask your primary care doctor for help to manage some lifestyle factors that increase your risk of heart disease:
- High blood pressure and cholesterol
- Physical inactivity
- Unhealthy diet