Coronary Artery Disease2024-04-16T13:46:06+00:00

The leading cause of death in the U.S.

Coronary Artery Disease

Pink heart icon with a plus sign

Coronary artery disease (CAD) affects more than 20.5 million adults in the U.S. alone.

CAD is caused by a buildup of plaque in the walls of coronary arteries that are responsible for blood and oxygen supply of the heart. Gradual increase of plaque burden, a process called atherosclerosis, can lead to a narrowing of the coronary arteries. This build-up causes inflammation, which often goes untreated, and ultimately leads to an acute coronary syndrome (ACS) event such as a heart attack or unstable angina.

0M
Patients in the US who have had a heart attack
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Hospitalizations in the US annually for ACS
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Of ACS patients have a second cardiac event within 2 years
Graphic showing acute coronary syndrome's effect on the heart

CAD can lead to Acute Coronary Syndrome

Acute coronary syndrome (ACS) is an umbrella term for conditions in which blood supply to the heart muscle is reduced or blocked through the buildup or rupture of atherosclerotic plaques in the coronary arteries. Prolonged lack of blood and oxygen supply results in cell damage. ACS presents in the clinic as heart attack or unstable angina (cardiac chest pain)

Inflammation Is Much Worse After An ACS Event

Inflammation and oxidative stress spike after an ACS which can cause long term damage to the coronary arteries. Risk of a second heart attack or death are significantly higher after an ACS.

Chart showing the progression of arterial inflammation and its side effects.

Patients Need Better Treatment Options for Coronary Inflammation

Despite therapeutic advances over the past decades, 1-in-5 patients will experience a recurrent heart attack and die within two years of the initial ACS event even on optimal preventative therapy.

  • Inflammation can cause a heart attack even after other risk factors are controlled by the use of lipid-lowering drugs like statins.

  • Anti-inflammatory therapies can lower the risk of a heart attack, but doses must be carefully titrated to avoid treatment-related risks and side effects. Furthermore, the long-term safety of these broad-acting therapies are unknown.

  • Orticumab aims to be the first highly-specific treatment option for the treatment of coronary artery disease and acute coronary syndrome.

Man holding hands over his heart in pain while woman is on the phone, concerned about him

Patients Need Better Treatment Options for Coronary Inflammation

Despite therapeutic advances over the past decades, 1-in-5 patients will experience a recurrent heart attack and die within two years of the initial ACS event even on optimal preventative therapy.

  • Inflammation can cause a heart attack even after other risk factors are controlled by the use of lipid-lowering drugs like statins.

  • Anti-inflammatory therapies can lower the risk of a heart attack, but doses must be carefully titrated to avoid treatment-related risks and side effects. Furthermore, the long-term safety of these broad-acting therapies are unknown.

  • Orticumab aims to be the first highly-specific treatment option for the treatment of coronary artery disease and acute coronary syndrome.

Overweight, middle-aged, white man in a button-down shirt sitting with younger, white female doctor looking at an ipad in a medical office. Decorative, brand colored polygons around the outside of the shape, which also has slightly curved edges.

Learn more about CAD from industry leaders.

We are part of an incredible ecosystem of dedicated organizations tackling Coronary Artery Disease and Acute Coronary Syndrome. Here are some of the leading resources.

frequently asked questions

What are the symptoms of coronary artery disease?2024-04-12T22:30:06+00:00

The symptoms of coronary artery disease can vary depending on the specific condition but may include chest pain or discomfort (angina), shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness, palpitations (irregular heartbeats), swelling in the legs, ankles, or abdomen, and fainting spells. A completely blocked coronary artery will cause a heart attack. The classic signs and symptoms of a heart attack include crushing chest pain or pressure, shoulder or arm pain, shortness of breath, and sweating. However, it’s important to note that some people with coronary artery disease may not experience any symptoms, especially in the early stages.

What are the common risk factors for coronary artery disease?2024-04-12T21:20:51+00:00

Common risk factors for coronary artery disease include high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, smoking, obesity, diabetes, lack of physical activity, unhealthy diet, excessive alcohol consumption, stress, and age. Genetics and family history also play a significant role in determining an individual’s risk.

What is coronary artery disease?2024-04-12T21:31:06+00:00

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the most common type of heart disease in the United States. It is sometimes called coronary heart disease or ischemic heart disease. Coronary artery disease is caused by plaque buildup in the wall of the arteries that supply blood to the heart (called coronary arteries). Plaque is made up of cholesterol deposits. Plaque buildup causes the inside of the arteries to narrow over time. This process is called atherosclerosis. For some people, the first sign of CAD is a heart attack.

How can I prevent coronary artery disease?2024-04-12T21:59:05+00:00

You can reduce your risk of coronary artery disease by adopting a healthy lifestyle. This includes maintaining a balanced diet low in saturated fats, cholesterol, and sodium, exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, managing stress effectively, and getting regular check-ups with your healthcare provider to monitor and manage any risk factors.

What treatments are available for coronary artery disease?2024-04-12T22:01:23+00:00

Treatment for coronary artery disease may include lifestyle changes such as dietary modifications, exercise programs, and smoking cessation, medications to control blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and other risk factors, procedures such as angioplasty and stent placement to open blocked arteries, coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery, and cardiac rehabilitation programs to support recovery and improve heart health.

How is coronary artery disease diagnosed?2024-04-12T22:08:54+00:00

Diagnosis of coronary artery disease typically involves a combination of medical history assessment, physical examination, and diagnostic tests. These tests may include blood tests to check cholesterol levels and other markers of heart health, electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) to measure the heart’s electrical activity, echocardiogram to visualize the heart’s structure and function, stress tests, coronary angiography, cardiac CT scan, and others as determined by your healthcare provider.

Our Sources

1: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NIH), What Is Coronary Heart Disease?

2: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

3: MayoClinic, Coronary artery disease – Symptoms & Causes

4: MayoClinic, Coronary artery disease – Diagnosis & treatment

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