Arteriosclerosis is one of the most common diseases of the blood vessels. It refers to a thickening of the walls of the arteries due to the presence of the calcium or lime.
Arteriosclerosis is usually preceded by Atherosclerosis, a kind of degeneration or softening of the inner lining of the blood vessels walls. The most risky place for such degeneration are the coronary vessels of the heart and the arteries leading to the brain. Arteriosclerosis result in the lost of elasticity of the blood vessels, with a narrowing of the smaller arteries, which interferes with the free circulation of the blood. These changes may gradually extend to capillaries and veins. It is more frequent in men than women especially in the younger age group. It can lead to heart attack.
Symptoms of Arteriosclerosis
Signs of inadequate supply of blood usually occurs first in the legs. There may be numbness and coldness in the feet and cramps and pains in the legs even after light exercise. If the coronary arteries are involved, the patient may have sharp pains, characteristics of angina pectoris. When arteries leading to the brain are involved , the vessel may burst, causing hemorrhage in the brain tissues. A cerebral vascular stroke, with partial or complete paralysis of one side of the body may result, if there is blockage with a blood clot. It may also lead to loss of memory and a confused state of mind in elderly people. If arteries leading to the kidneys are involved, the patient may suffer from high blood pressure and kidney disorders.
Causes of Arteriosclerosis
Excessive intake of white sugar, refined foods and high fat diet rich in cholesterol. High blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, rheumatism, Brights disease, malaria, syphilis, emotional stress and sedentary lifestyle.