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People who have coronary heart disease usually have coronary artery calcification.

In people older than 70, more than 90% of men and 67% of women have coronary artery calcification. Before menopause, estrogen protects women from developing atherosclerosis. This is why women tend to develop atherosclerosis 10 to 15 years later than men.

People who are white are more likely than other races to have coronary artery calcification.

You’re more likely to get coronary artery calcification if you have:

  • Chronic kidney disease.
  • Glucose issues such as diabetes mellitus.
  • Too much bad cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein or LDL) and too little good cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein or HDL).
  • High BMI (body mass index).
  • Family history of coronary artery calcification.
  • High blood pressure.
  • A history of cigarette smoking or using other tobacco products.
  • Older age.
  • Parathyroid hormone irregularities.
  • High phosphate levels.
  • High calcium level.

People who were assigned male at birth also have a higher risk for coronary artery calcification.


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