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Cardiovascular Disease Essay

958 words - 4 pages

Calcium channel blockers, also called calcium antagonists, are drugs that lower blood pressure by preventing calcium ions from entering cells of the heart and blood vessel walls. They relax and widen these vessels by working on the cells in the muscles of the arterial walls by serving as antagonists to the channels that accept calcium in the cardiovascular system. They work because calcium serves as a crucial second messenger physiologically and is commonly used in channels, exchangers, and pumps. Calcium is also involved in the depolarization of the cardiac muscle cells, which govern the contraction and relaxation cycles of the heartbeat. In general, calcium channel blockers can be ...view middle of the document...

This leads to a decrease in the heart rate and increase in the efficiency of the heartbeat because the blood pressure that increases for each stroke leads to an increase in stroke volume as well. Additionally, electrical effects of the action potential are increased because the intracellular concentration of calcium ions (used to depolarize the muscle cell into an action potential) also increases. Another result of this is the decreased refractory period of the atria and ventricles. Because heart disease can be due to strain on the heart, digoxin’s effects can reduce the risk of cardiovascular symptoms [6].
Non-medication treatments
Another example of a treatment that is used for cardiovascular disease symptoms is angioplasty (also called percutaneous), which is a nonsurgical procedure that helped open narrowing or blocked coronary arteries, and prevent the blood vessel from rupturing. A thin and flexible tube with a balloon or other device on the end is inserted into the blood vessel that is narrowing or blocked, and can be inflated to compress any plaque buildup against the wall of the artery. This restores normal blood flow through the vessel and can be a suitable treatment for plaque buildup. After the procedure, a small tube made of mesh called a stent is often placed in the artery where the balloon was opened to stabilize the vessel. Because the procedure is quite effective, it has been used to improve symptoms of cardiovascular disease, such as angina, or prevent stroke or heart attack, rather than solely as a treatment after a stroke or heart attack occurs. In general, this procedure does not show serious complications because it is not as invasive as many other procedures may be; instead, discomfort and bleeding at the site of the tube insertion can result [5].
One surgical procedure that is sometimes used to treat cardiovascular disease is coronary artery bypass grafting, which is the most common type of open-heart...

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