Cor Clinic

Cor Clinic

Cardiovascular Diseases and Treatment

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What is Cardiovascular Disease?

The term “heart disease” encompasses various cardiovascular problems. The most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease, which affects the blood flow to the heart. Reduced blood flow can lead to a heart attack.
The term cardiovascular disease can be used specifically to denote heart conditions affecting blood vessels.

Important: Learning about the risk factors for heart disease can help in prevention!

Types of Heart Disease:

Various diseases and conditions fall under the group of heart disease. Types of heart disease include:

1- Cardiomyopathy:

Causes stiffness or weakening of the heart muscles.

  • Symptoms may not be apparent in early stages but can include:
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting.
  • Fatigue.
  • Shortness of breath during activity or at rest.
  • Breathlessness while trying to sleep or waking up breathless.
  • Irregular heartbeats giving a sensation of rapid, fluttering, or pounding heartbeat.
  • Swollen legs, ankles, or feet.

2- Arrhythmia:

An abnormality in heart rhythm where the heart may beat too fast, too slow, or irregularly.

  • Symptoms may include:
  • Fluttering in the chest.
  • Chest pain or discomfort.
  • Slow heartbeat (bradycardia).
  • Fainting or near-fainting dizziness.
  • Rapid heartbeat (tachycardia).
  • Shortness of breath.

3- Heart Valve Problems:

The heart has four valves: Aortic, Mitral, Pulmonary, and Tricuspid valves.

  • Conditions like valve stenosis, leakage (regurgitation), or improper closing (prolapse) can affect these valves.
  • Symptoms of valve problems can include:
  • Chest pain.
  • Fainting (syncope).
  • Fatigue.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Swollen ankles or feet.

4- Atherosclerosis:

Atherosclerosis is the hardening of arteries, often due to the buildup of plaque. Plaque buildup can reduce blood flow to the heart and other parts of the body, leading to conditions like heart attacks or strokes.

5- Congenital Heart Defects:

Congenital heart defects are irregularities in the heart’s structure present at birth.

  • Severe defects are usually detected shortly after birth and may show symptoms like:
  • Bluish or gray skin or lips (cyanosis).
  • Swelling in the legs, abdomen, or areas around the eyes.
  • Shortness of breath causing poor weight gain during feeding in infants.
  • Less severe congenital defects may not be diagnosed until childhood or adulthood and might present symptoms like:
  • Easily tiring during exercise or activity.
  • Swelling in the hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Fatigue during exercise.

Coronary Artery Disease (CAD): A prevalent heart disease affecting the major blood vessels supplying blood to the heart muscle.

  • Symptoms can include chest pain, pressure, or discomfort (angina), shortness of breath, and pain or discomfort in the arms, neck, jaw, throat, upper abdomen, or back.
  • Men and women may experience different symptoms. Diagnosis of coronary artery disease may not occur until a heart attack, angina, stroke, or heart failure develops. Monitoring heart symptoms and discussing concerns with a healthcare professional is crucial. Regular health checkups may help in early detection of cardiovascular diseases.

What Are the Symptoms of Cardiovascular Disease?

Sometimes cardiovascular disease can be “silent,” and a person may not be diagnosed until they experience symptoms or signs of a heart attack, heart failure, or arrhythmia. When these events occur, symptoms may include:

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Heart Attack:

  • Chest pain or discomfort.
  • Pain or discomfort in the back or neck.
  • Indigestion.
  • Heartburn.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Excessive fatigue.
  • Discomfort in the upper body.
  • Dizziness.
  • Shortness of breath.

Arrhythmia: An abnormality in heart rhythm where the heart may beat too fast, too slow, or irregularly.

  • Symptoms may include:
  • Fluttering in the chest.
  • Chest pain or discomfort.
  • Slow heartbeat (bradycardia).
  • Fainting or near-fainting dizziness.
  • Rapid heartbeat (tachycardia).
  • Shortness of breath.

Heart Valve Problems: The heart has four valves: Aortic, Mitral, Pulmonary, and Tricuspid valves.

  • Conditions like valve stenosis, leakage (regurgitation), or improper closing (prolapse) can affect these valves.
  • Symptoms of valve problems can include:
    Chest pain.
  • Fainting (syncope).
  • Fatigue.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Swollen ankles or feet.


Atherosclerosis: Atherosclerosis is the hardening of arteries, often due to the buildup of plaque.

  • Plaque buildup can reduce blood flow to the heart and other parts of the body, leading to conditions like heart attacks or strokes.
  • Congenital Heart Defects:
  • Congenital heart defects are irregularities in the heart’s structure present at birth.
  • Severe defects are usually detected shortly after birth and may show symptoms like:
  • Bluish or gray skin or lips (cyanosis).
  • Swelling in the legs, abdomen, or areas around the eyes.
  • Shortness of breath causing poor weight gain during feeding in infants.
  • Less severe congenital defects may not be diagnosed until childhood or adulthood and might present symptoms like:
  • Easily tiring during exercise or activity.
  • Swelling in the hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Fatigue during exercise.
  • Coronary Artery Disease (CAD):
  • A prevalent heart disease affecting the major blood vessels supplying blood to the heart muscle.
  • Symptoms can include chest pain, pressure, or discomfort (angina), shortness of breath, and pain or discomfort in the arms, neck, jaw, throat, upper abdomen, or back.
  • Men and women may experience different symptoms. Diagnosis of coronary artery disease may not occur until a heart attack, angina, stroke, or heart failure develops. Monitoring heart symptoms and discussing concerns with a healthcare professional is crucial. Regular health checkups may help in early detection of cardiovascular diseases.

What Are the Symptoms of Cardiovascular Disease?

Sometimes cardiovascular disease can be “silent,” and a person may not be diagnosed until they experience symptoms or signs of a heart attack, heart failure, or arrhythmia. When these events occur, symptoms may include:

Heart Attack:

  • Chest pain or discomfort.
  • Pain or discomfort in the back or neck.
  • Indigestion.
  • Heartburn.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Excessive fatigue.
  • Discomfort in the upper body.
  • Dizziness.
  • Shortness of breath.


Arrhythmia:

  • Fluttering sensations in the chest (palpitations).

Heart Failure:

  • Shortness of breath.
  • Fatigue.
  • Swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, abdomen, or neck veins.

Risk Factors for Heart Disease:

  • High blood pressure.
  • High cholesterol.
  • Smoking.
  • Other factors include:
  • Age.
  • Gender.
  • Family history.
  • Diabetes.
  • Stress.
  • Poor dental health.
  • Excess weight and obesity.
  • Unhealthy diet.
  • Lack of physical activity.
  • Excessive smoking and alcohol use.

What is Cardiac Rehabilitation?

Cardiac rehabilitation is an important program for anyone recovering from a heart attack, heart
failure, or certain types of heart surgeries. It is a supervised program that includes:

  • Physical activity.
  • Education on healthy living, including ways to help with prescribed medication use and quitting smoking.
  • Counseling to find ways to reduce stress and improve mental health. A team of individuals, including your doctor, exercise and nutrition specialist, physiotherapist, and counselor or mental health professional, can assist you in cardiac rehabilitation.

Preventing Heart Diseases:

To contribute to preventing heart disease, it is necessary to make some lifestyle changes. Pay attention to the following for a healthy heart:

  • Do not smoke.
  • Consume a low-sodium and low-saturated fat diet.
  • Engage in exercise for at least 30 minutes, at least 4-5 days a week.
  • Maintain a healthy weight according to your height.
  • Reduce and manage stress.
  • Control high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
  • Pay attention to your sleep schedule. Adults should aim for 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night.


Treating Heart Diseases:

With advancements in medical technology, most heart diseases can now be treated using non-surgical (interventional) methods. Especially in recent years, due to technological progress, many heart conditions can be treated without surgery. Among these advancements are procedures such as opening heart vessels with stents, treating arrhythmias, and developments in medications and preventive treatments.

Kalp Hastalıklarını Önlemek İçin Neler Yapılabilir?Non-surgical treatment methods allow patients to recover quickly without any scars or incisions, enabling them to return to their daily  lives.

The most significant progress in non-surgical heart treatment has been in the field of heart valve diseases. Proven non-surgical treatments for heart valves include:

  • TAVI (Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation): Applied to the aortic valve.
  • MitraClip: Applied to the mitral valve.