Your healthcare provider will talk to you about the best treatment plan for you. Follow your treatment plan to reduce your risk of problems that can result from coronary artery disease, like heart attack and stroke.
The first step in treating coronary artery disease is to reduce your risk factors. This involves making changes in your lifestyle.
Your healthcare provider will recommend medications to best manage your risk factors for heart disease. Types of heart-related medications that may be selected for you include:
If you have diabetes and coronary artery disease, you’ll be prescribed medications to lower your blood sugar level.
It's important to take all medications as prescribed, including those for heart disease and all other health conditions. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns about which medications to take or how to take them.
Procedures and surgery
Interventional procedures are nonsurgical treatments to get rid of plaque buildup in the arteries and prevent blockages. Common procedures are balloon angioplasty and stenting. These procedures are done with a long, thin tube called a catheter. It is inserted into an artery in the wrist or the top of the leg through a small incision and guided to the blocked or narrowed area of the artery. The balloon widens the diameter of the artery to restore blood flow to the heart. A stent (a small metal spring-like scaffold) is left in place to keep your artery open.
Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery involves creating a new path for blood to flow when there is a blockage in the coronary arteries. In most cases, the surgeon removes blood vessels from your chest, arm or leg, and creates a new pathway to deliver oxygen-rich blood to the heart.
If traditional treatment options are not successful, your cardiologist may recommend other treatment options, such as enhanced external counterpulsation (EECP). In this procedure, inflatable cuffs (like blood pressure cuffs) are used to squeeze the blood vessels in your lower body. This helps improve blood flow to the heart and helps create natural bypasses (collateral circulation) around blocked coronary arteries. Enhanced external counterpulsation is a possible treatment for those with chronic stable angina who can’t have an invasive procedure or bypass surgery and don't get relief from medication.