PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WSAZ) – At one point invasive heart surgery and medication were the only treatment alternatives for any patient with a blockage in their arteries.
“We’re sitting at a place where heart disease is so prevalent,” said Dr. Muhammad Ahmad, a cardiologist at Pikevile Medical Center.
But new tools and techniques are helping cardiologists burrow with stiff wires deployed by thin catheters through the hard plaque and calcium that have created road blocks.
“We go through the calcified arteries and open up the holes a little. It expands the arteries so we can place in the stent,” Dr. Ahmad said.
The device operates like a drill that spins and sands down the calcium blockage in what doctors call your heart’s plumbing. The human heart has four chambers.
“In layman terms there’s a room with plumbing, electricity, and doors in it,” Dr. Ahmad said. “What I do to is try and fix the plumbing which is the blockages of the arteries. “
Dr. Ahmad says the best way to prevent the clogging of your arteries is keeping a close eye on the risk factors of heart disease.
“Don’t smoke, eat right, exercise, keep your blood pressure, treat your cholesterol and diabetes, because if you’re not controlling, it will get you one point,” Dr. Ahmad said. “Treat your risk factors so you don’t have to come to see me and you can prevent your heart attack.”
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