Treatments for Heart Disease
Nobody likes to learn this, but the best treatment for heart disease is a simple diet, limited alcohol, and exercise. Your doctor may prescribe exercise therapies, support groups, and dieticians, but the one who has to do this work is really you. You may need medicines, but the plan is to take fewer meds over time with your doctor supervising any changes.
Antiplatelet Drugs Aspirin is and antiplatelet drug. These keep arteries open and keep blood clots from forming.
Anticoagulants Blood thinners prevent blood from clotting. Examples are Warfarin and Heparin.
Digitalis makes the heart contract harder and slows fast rhythms.
ACE Inhibitors stop a chemical that narrows blood vessels and so reduce high blood pressure.
Beta Blockers slow the heart so blood pressure drops and the heart doesn't have to work so hard.
Nitrates or nitroglycerin, relax blood vessels and stop chest pain.
Calcium Channel Blockers relax blood vessels and are used to treat high blood pressure and chest pain.
Diuretics (sometimes called water pills) treat high blood pressure by decreasing fluid in the body.
Blood Cholesterol-Lowering Agents decrease LDL or bad cholesterol levels in the blood.
Thrombolytic Agents are given during a heart attack to break up a blood clot.
Angioplasty and Stents angioplasty is a minor surgical procedure to open blocked heart arteries. Stents can be installed during angioplasty.
Heart Bypass Surgery When coronary arteries are blocked, heart bypass surgery creates a new pathway to the heart.
Valve Disease Treatment A fairly new procedure is balloon valvuloplasty, though traditional surgical proceedures might be required.
Cardioversion sometimes called Electrical Cardioversion sends electric shocks to your heart to correct abnormal heartbeats.
EECP treatment is not invasive and is an outpatient therapy. Blood pressure cuffs on both legs gently compress the blood vessels to boost blood flow to your heart. Each wave is timed to your heartbeat. This helps small blood vessel in your heart to open and give more blood flow to your heart muscle.
Pacemakers these are small devices that send electrical impulses to the heart muscle to keep up heart rate and rhythm.
Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator is used to treat abnormal heart rhythms.
Left Ventricular Assist Device is a kind of mechanical heart, placed inside your chest by a surgeon.
Heart Transplant A healthy donor's heart is used to replace your diseased heart. The donor is a person who has died.