Angina is a word used to describe pain caused by a reduction of blood flow to the heart. This results in the heart failing to receive an adequate supply of oxygen, which ultimately causes pain. Stable angina -- also called angina pectoris -- is the most common form of the condition. This term refers to chest pain that follows a predictable pattern. Stable angina can be both uncomfortable and painful, and typically indicates the presence of an underlying medical condition. Therefore, anyone experiencing such symptoms should make an appointment with a qualified health professional.
If a person has experienced a narrowing of the arteries for any reason, he or she may be at high risk for stable angina. Also referred to as atherosclerosis, narrowing of the arteries often prevents the heart from obtaining an adequate supply of oxygen. Substances such as plaque, cholesterol, fat, and calcium can build up within the artery walls if they have narrowed. This, in turn, reduces the heart's supply of oxygen-rich blood. Narrowing of the arteries may be the result of an underlying condition, or it may be idiopathic, meaning a cause could not be identified.
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