What is ischemic heart disease?
Ischemia means lack of blood supply, ischemic heart disease means a spectrum of diseases of the heart produced by decrease in the blood supply to the heart. Ischemia results either from reduced supply or increased demand. Most often it is the former, due to narrowing of coronary arteries. Coronary arteries are narrowed due to atherosclerotic plaques. It results in angina pectoris and myocardial infarction (heart attack). When the heart is enlarged and the heart muscle thickened, ischemia may occur even without narrowing of coronary arteries, due to a supply demand mismatch.