The coronary artery supplies blood to the heart. If calcium builds up in the coronary artery, it can lead to coronary artery disease and increase a person’s risk of a heart attack.
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the human body. Most of the calcium in the body is present in teeth and bone. However, small amounts are present in the bloodstream. Over time, calcium and other compounds can accumulate in the arteries. When these deposits grow large, they can impede blood flow and result in health complications.
Read on to learn more about the causes and risk factors for coronary artery calcification, as well as possible treatment options.
As the human body ages, calcium can deposit in different parts of the body. Coronary artery calcification is the term for a
Coronary artery calcification
The development of calcium deposits tends to occur alongside the progression of plaque buildups in the artery. Medical professionals
Arterial plaque often consists of:
- fatty substances
- cellular waste products
When plaque builds up in a person’s arteries, it narrows the channel within the artery. This reduces blood flow, which causes less oxygen and other nutrients to reach cells within the body.
A number of factors can increase a person’s risk of coronary artery calcification,
- increased age
- being male
A number of medical conditions can also increase a person’s risk of coronary artery calcification. These conditions include:
A person with coronary artery calcification may not experience
Symptoms of atherosclerosis depend on the location of the plaque buildup. Coronary atherosclerosis, which occurs in the arteries that supply blood to the heart, can manifest as angina. This refers to chest discomfort and shortness of breath that typically occurs with exercise.
Atherosclerosis can occur in arteries in other parts of the body, such as the legs, brain, neck, and abdomen. Other possible symptoms of atherosclerosis
During a CAC test, the MDCT takes detailed images of the arteries that supply blood to a person’s heart muscles. These images can show the presence of calcium deposits in these arteries. This is important, as medical professionals associate higher amounts of calcium deposits with more severe disease in the heart’s arteries.
Treatment for coronary artery calcification
- advanced kidney disease
In more severe cases, where there is a significant obstruction, a doctor can perform a
Alternatively, they may use
A person may be able to reduce their risk of developing coronary artery calcification by managing certain risk factors. This can include maintaining a healthy lifestyle and managing chronic health conditions that may increase a person’s risk of coronary artery calcification.
Health conditions that can increase a person’s risk of coronary artery calcification
- metabolic syndrome
- chronic kidney disease
Some frequently asked questions about coronary artery calcification may include:
Can vitamin D cause coronary artery calcification?
Vitamin D may play various roles in the development of coronary artery calcification. Some studies suggest that excessive vitamin D
However, other studies report that vitamin D deficiency can also promote calcification. These reports state that long-term vitamin D supplementation may provide protective effects.
Current evidence from experimental studies suggests that either excess or deficient levels of vitamin D can potentially lead to calcification.
Can calcium supplements cause coronary artery calcification?
Calcium supplements can
Can doctors stent calcified arteries?
Can statins prevent calcification?
Evidence suggests that statins can reduce atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk in people with coronary calcification. While taking statins may increase the density of calcium, it slows plaque progression.
Calcium is present throughout the body. Around
The coronary artery supplies blood to the heart. Coronary artery calcification occurs when calcium deposits and other compounds build up in a person’s coronary artery. This can lead to coronary artery disease and increase a person’s risk of a heart attack.