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The goal of treatment is to prevent spasms and relieve chest pain. If you have a spasm, a medicine called nitroglycerin (Nitrostat®) widens your arteries to improve blood flow and relieve chest pain.

To prevent spasms long term, your provider may prescribe medications:

  • Calcium channel blockers, such as amlodipine (Norvasc®), diltiazem (Cardizem®) or nifedipine (Procardia®), relax your arteries.
  • Statinssuch as atorvastatin (Lipitor®) or simvastatin (Zocor®), lower your cholesterol and may prevent spasms.

Sometimes, coronary artery spasms lead to an irregular heart rhythm in your heart’s lower chambers (ventricular arrhythmia). If you have ventricular arrhythmia, your provider may recommend an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) to prevent any serious complications. ICDs use electrical signals to keep your heartbeat in a regular rhythm.


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