Heart attack - Causes

It is mainly caused due to the buildup of waxy substance called plaque inside the coronary articles, the condition is called atherosclerosis. The buildup of plaque occurs over many years. This causes the blood to clot and form on the plaque’s surface. If it grows large then it blocks the blood to flow inside the coronary arteries.

Coronary artery spasms or hemorrhage into a plaque may also lead to occlusion of the arteries, but these are less common causes of heart attack.

Most common causes are:     

  1. Smoking
  2. High blood pressure
  3. Overweight or obese
  4. Lack of exercise
  5. Diet
  6. Age and sex factor
  7. Alcohol
  8. Heredity (family history of heart disease)
  9. Ethnicity  and
  10. Stress

Less common causes are:

  1. Complications from bypass surgery or cardiac catheterization
  2. Drug abuse (e.g., cocaine use may impede blood flow in the heart)
  3. Lack of oxygen in the blood (hypoxia)
  4. Exposure to extreme cold
  5. Emotional stress or pain
  6. Some studies have shown that air pollution may increase the risk of heart attack, stroke and cardiovascular disease.

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