Q:

What is triple vessel disease?

A:

Triple vessel disease refers to the presence of narrowing or blockages in all three of the major coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart. An article in the journal "Circulation" on the American Heart Association website states that these blockages occupy 50 percent or more of the diameter of the artery.

The Mayo Clinic explains that two procedures are available for treating triple vessel coronary disease. Coronary artery bypass grafting, also known as open heart surgery, is one option. This is a surgery in which a vessel from another part of the body is used as a graft to bypass the coronary artery blockage. Angioplasty and stent placement is another procedure that is used. During this procedure, a doctor uses catheters and wires to place a balloon inside the blockage. The balloon is inflated, which pushes the blockage against the artery walls and opens the artery. Often a stent is left in the artery to help keep it open.

A study from the "Journal of Invasive Cardiology" reveals that, in terms of mortality and recurrent heart attack, the long-term outcomes of coronary bypass grafting and angioplasty are comparable. The Mayo Clinic reveals that committing to lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, eating healthy foods, exercising regularly and reducing stress levels is important to maintain the health of the heart's arteries.


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