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Cardiovascular Health

Cardiovascular Health

Description:

This lesson will identify various diseases and disorders of the cardiovascular system as well as steps that can be taken to maintain your cardiovascular health.

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Tutorial

What's Covered

This lesson will cover cardiovascular disorders and health by looking at:

  1. Types of Disorders
  2. Treatment for Blocked Arteries

1. Types of Disorders

This is an overview of some of the main disorders of the cardiovascular system:

An aneurysm is another type of cardiovascular disorder. This is when a weak spot on an artery bursts and causes blood loss.

A Heart attack is damage to the heart muscle leading to less blood being able to flow to the heart. The heart receives an insufficient amount of oxygen, and, therefore, is not able to function properly.

Terms to Know

    • Aneurysm
    • A weak spot on an artery that bursts.
    • Heart Attack
    • Damage to heart muscle which leads to decreased blood flow and decreased oxygen to the heart.

Arteriosclerosis is the hardening of arteries. This in turn can lead to atherosclerosis, which is blockage in the arteries.

A plaque is a mass that will clog an artery, formed by the buildup of cholesterol. Cholesterol will build up in artery walls and clog them, leading to those vessels, not being able to deliver oxygenated blood to tissues or organs as efficiently as they should be able to.

Think About It

You may have heard somewhere at some point that having high cholesterol is bad for you. This build of cholesterol causing plaque is why, but what is high cholesterol?

High cholesterol is when blood is too high in low density lipoproteins. This is basically just another word for bad or fatty cholesterol.

Terms to Know

    • Arteriosclerosis
    • The hardening of arteries.
    • Plaque
    • A mass that clogs an artery formed by buildup of cholesterol in the artery.
    • High Cholesterol
    • A condition in which blood is too high in lipoproteins and causes buildup in arteries.
    • Lipoproteins
    • Cholesterol in the blood such as high-density ("good" cholesterol) and low-density lipoproteins ("bad" cholesterol).

A thrombus is a clot that forms and sticks to a plaque. When a clot forms at the site of plaque, but doesn’t stick it is called an embolus. This can also be very dangerous because as it's floating through the bloodstream, it can get caught in another vessel somewhere and then block flow of blood to vital organs. If this happens, those organs aren't going to get the oxygen they need, and then those organs could eventually shut down.

ExampleAn embolus is the cause of strokes, which is where the clot blocks the flow of oxygen to the brain.

Terms to Know

    • Thrombus
    • A clot that forms in a vessel and sticks to a plaque.
    • Embolus
    • A clot that forms at the site of a plaque then floats into the bloodstream.

Many different factors can determine how at risk a person is for these disorders. These factors can include, but are not limited to:

  • Foods that you eat
  • How often you exercise
  • Genetics

2. Treatment of Blocked Arteries

Coronary bypass is one treatment for blocked arteries. This is a surgical procedure in which a section of artery is stitched from the aorta to the artery below the blocked area. This way the clog is bypassed, and blood can continuing flowing to the rest of the body.

Balloon angioplasty is another example of a treatment for blocked arteries. A balloon is inflated inside the artery to open up the artery. The pressure from the balloon will also help to flatten the plaque so it takes up less space in the artery as well. Stents are used sometimes in order to make sure that the vessel will stay open with a balloon angioplasty process.

Terms to Know

    • Coronary Bypass
    • Treatment of blocked arteries that involves a section of artery being stitched to the aorta and to a section of vessel below the blocked area.
    • Balloon Angioplasty
    • Treatment of blocked arteries that involves inflating a balloon inside an artery to condense a plaque to increase blood flow.

Summary

There are several different types of disorders associated with the cardiovascular system. An aneurysm is when a weak spot in the artery burst. A heart attack is damage to the heart muscle. Arteriosclerosis is the hardening of the arteries which can lead to blockage is the arteries. Plaque is caused by high cholesterol, and can block arteries. A thrombus is when a clot forms at and sticks to a site of plaque. When a clot forms at the site of plaque, but then floats into the bloodstream, it is called an embolus. To treat blocked arteries doctor can perform a coronary bypass or a balloon angioplasty.

Keep up the learning and have a great day!

Source: SOURCE: THIS WORK IS ADAPTED FROM SOPHIA AUTHOR AMANDA SODERLIND

TERMS TO KNOW
  • Arteriosclerosis

    The hardening of arteries.

  • Aneurysm

    A weak spot on an artery that bursts.

  • Heart Attack

    Damage to heart muscle which leads to decreased blood flow and decreased oxygen to the heart.

  • Plaque

    A mass that clogs an artery formed by buildup of cholesterol in the artery.

  • Thrombus

    A clot that forms in a vessel and sticks to a plaque.

  • Embolus

    A clot that forms at the site of a plaque then floats into the bloodstream.

  • High Cholesterol

    A condition in which blood is too high in lipoproteins and causes buildup in arteries.

  • Lipoproteins

    Cholesterol in the blood such as high-density ("good" cholesterol) and low-density lipoproteins ("bad" cholesterol).

  • Coronary Bypass

    Treatment of blocked arteries that involves a section of artery being stitched to the aorta and to a section of vessel below the blocked area.

  • Balloon Angioplasty

    Treatment of blocked arteries that involves inflating a balloon inside an artery to condense a plaque to increase blood flow.