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The aorta is the main blood vessel that carries blood throughout the body. An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) occurs when an area of the aorta becomes enlarged or balloons out. If the aneurysm becomes large enough, it may rupture.
Each year millions of people experience abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias), which are common as we age. For most, a normal resting heart rate is 60 to 100 beats per minute (bpm). For athletic individuals, a normal resting heart rate may be as low as 40 to 60 bpm.
Aortic dissection is defined as acute within 14 days after onset of symptoms. This definition is used in trials and in clinical practice. In contrast to patients with acute complications, such as rupture, rapid enlargement and malperfusion, patients with chronic dissection are treated for aneurysm formation.
As an injury that is commonly found in those who participate in high-intensity sports like basketball, football and soccer, an anterior cruciate ligament injury (ACL) affects roughly 250,000 people a year in the United States alone.
Aortic disease is the 13th leading cause of death in Western Countries.
This condition occurs when the aorta tears or ruptures. The degree of injury can range from minimal bruising of the aorta to complete separation and rupture.
This condition requires prompt diagnosis and treatment.
Arteritis refers to inflammation of your arteries that damages your blood vessel walls and reduces blood flow to your organs.
Arthritis is painful inflammation and stiffness of the joints. It is estimated that approximately 50 million Americans suffer from arthritis. There are more than 100 different forms of the disease with the two main types being osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Individuals diagnosed with ataxia experience a failure of muscle control in their arms and legs which may result in a loss of balance, coordination and gait disturbances. Ataxia may affect the fingers, hands, arms, legs and body, as well as speech and eye movements.
Atrial fibrillation (AF) results from multiple electrical impulses firing from both upper chambers of the heart (right and left atrium). It causes the heart to beat fast, very irregularly, and with less efficiency than with normal rhythm. AF can occur intermittently (paroxysmal AF). Episodes can occur frequently or rarely.
Benign breast disease, also known as benign breast conditions, are noncancerous disorders that affect the breast.
Bladder cancer occurs in the bladder – the organ, located in the pelvic area that stores urine. The most common bladder cancer forms on the inside bladder lining.
Most bone cancers are caused by advanced breast, prostate or lung cancers spreading to the bone. Primary bone cancer, which forms in bone cells, is rare and occurs more often in children.
A brain tumor forms when abnormal cells grow in the tissues of the brain.
More than 200,000 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime. Breast cancer accounts for more than 30 percent of all cancers found in women.
Breast density, or dense breast tissue refers to the appearance of breast tissue on a mammogram. Women with dense breasts have more dense tissue than fatty tissue.
Cardiac tumors are primary tumors or secondary tumors that form in the heart. Most cardiac tumors are noncancerous (benign) and some cardiac tumors are cancerous (malignant).
Cardiomyopathy is the disease of the heart muscle. There are many reasons why this can occur including coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, certain viruses and genetics. Cardiomyopathy usually results in an enlarged heart and ultimately heart failure.
The carotid arteries supply the head and neck with oxygenated blood. Carotid artery disease refers to the narrowing of these arteries caused by the build up of plaque (fatty substances along the inner wall of the artery).
Cervical cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow on the lining of cervix located in the lower part of the uterus (womb) in the female reproductive system. Cervical cancer forms slowly over time showing little or no symptoms, but is easily detected from regular Pap tests and is usually most curable if found early.
When the heart muscle does not get enough blood flow, which carries oxygen to the heart muscle, it results in chest pain (angina pectoris or just angina). Chest pain can occur for several reasons, but it should always be taken seriously as it could be the first sign of a heart attack.
Patients with chorea have irregular and dance-like, involuntary movements that may have a writhing quality.
CKD - Chronic kidney disease is a condition where the kidneys are impaired and can’t filter blood properly. It is called “chronic” because the impairment to your kidneys develops over a lengthy period of time. This causes wastes to intensify in your system. This can also be the root problem for other health issues.
Aortic coarctation is a narrowing of the aorta, y.
Colorectal cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow in the lining of the colon or rectum located at the end of the digestive system. Colorectal cancer grows slowly over time and mostly begins as a polyp that is non-cancerous. An uncommon type of polyp, called adenoma, can become cancerous.
Congenital heart disease is a heart condition where the structure of the heart and vessels do not form correctly during fetal development in the uterus. Defects can form in the walls of the heart, heart valves, and arteries and veins leading to the heart.
Degenerative joint diseases (DJDs) are chronic conditions often resulting in pain and the loss of an active lifestyle and quality of life. There are different types of DJD that can affect the hip, see "Types" below:
Diabetes is a disease that prevents your body from converting sugar, starches and other foods you eat into energy. The pancreas, an organ near the stomach, produces a hormone called insulin which affects the metabolism.
Functional digestive disorders afflict up to 20 percent of the American population, resulting in at least 3.5 million office visits each year. Studies show that more people would be prompted to seek help for their digestive disorders if they were confident the disorders could be corrected.
Dystonia is a neurological condition. People with dystonia – either on its own or as part of another condition – experience sustained or intermittent muscle contractions that cause abnormal postures, unusual repetitive movements, or both.
More than half of men over the age of 60 have an enlarged prostate, also called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). This condition occurs when a man’s prostate gland grows larger as he ages. If a man has an enlarged prostate, it does not mean he has or will have cancer. It does not cause prostate cancer.
Esophageal cancer forms in the tissues of the lining of the esophagus, the tube connecting the throat to the stomach at the beginning of the digestive system.
Fecal incontinence is losing control of bowel movements. The severity can range from leakage when passing gas to complete loss of control.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is the most common gastrointestinal disorder in the United States, affecting 25 - 40 million people, including infants and children. GERD occurs when the stomach’s acidic contents rise up into the esophagus, the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach.
Gestational diabetes is a condition that occurs during pregnancy and diabetes has never been previously diagnosed. Women who are pregnant may experience high blood sugar (glucose) levels. It is estimated that approximately 10 percent of pregnant women develop gestational diabetes.
Saddleback Medical Center is part of the “Get with the Guidelines—Stroke” program from the American Stroke Association to provide the most current and effective procedures to improve the overall quality of care for first-time stroke patients and treatments for those who have a history of stroke.
Cancer that occurs in the female reproductive system is known as gynecologic cancer. Annually there are about 90,000 women diagnosed with gynecologic cancer in the U.S. alone. More than half of the gynecologic cancers diagnosed are cervical cancer according to estimates from the National Cancer Institute.
Most head and neck cancers form in the moist tissues (mucosal surface) lining the mouth, nose and throat. In the United States, approximately three to five percent of cancers are head and neck cancers. These cancers are more common in men and in people over age 50.
We believe that being well-informed will help you make the best choices about your heart care when you consult with our physicians. Below, we have provided some links to independent online resources for heart information.
Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction) is a Medical Emergency
If you think you may be experiencing a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately so that treatment can start as soon as possible. Do not drive yourself or wait for a ride from a friend or family member. Have an ambulance take you to a hospital that is a cardiac
Heart Disease, also known as Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) or Cardiovascular Disease, is a condition that involves the narrowing or blocking of the coronary arteries.
Heart Disease Facts
Heart disease is the number one killer of women over the age of 25 in the United States irrespective of race or ethnicity. Each year, six times as many women die of cardiovascular disease than of breast cancer. The condition affects approximately 10 percent of women between the ages of 45 and 64, and one in four women over
Heart failure, sometimes known as Congestive Heart Failure (CHF), occurs when the heart can't pump enough to the rest of the body. If the heart muscle cannot pump enough blood, it cannot meet the body's needs for blood and oxygen. The heart is a pump that circulates the blood throughout the body.
In the United States the number of hip fracture injuries has reached approximately 300,000 a year. As a serious injury that commonly affects women, a hip fracture is a break in the upper quarter of the femur (thigh) bone. The extent of the break depends on the forces that are involved.
Aortitis entails inflammatory changes in the aortic wall that causes necrosis and destruction of structural elements of the vessel wall.
Aortic intramural hematoma (IMH) is an acute aortic disease, defined by the presence of hemorrhage within the aortic wall, and no evidence of intimal tear. The penetrating aortic ulcer (PAU) is a chronic aortic condition, defined by an ulcer-like disruption of the intima maturing within the aortic lumen.
Kidney cancer forms in the kidney(s), the organs that remove waste from the blood and transport the wastes to the bladder.
The knee joint is made up of bone, cartilage, ligaments and fluid. Muscles and tendons help the knee joint move. When any of these structures is hurt or diseased knee problems occur, pain and difficulty walking can be the result.
Leukemia occurs when cancer forms in blood cells located in bone marrow, the center of the bone where blood cells are produced. Blood cells in the body die naturally and new cells are formed in the bone marrow to replenish lost cells.
Cancer that originates in the liver is known as liver cancer, hepatic cancer or hepatocellular carcinoma (from the Greek hēpar, meaning liver).
Lung cancer begins when abnormal cells grow in one or both lungs. Abnormal cells can invade healthy lung tissue, form tumors and prevent the lung from functioning correctly, resulting in less oxygen circulating in the body.
A lung nodule, also called a pulmonary nodule, is one of the most common abnormalities seen on radiographic images, and is a small mass of tissue in the lung that is smaller than 3 cm (slightly more than an inch) in diameter. The nodule appears as a white shadow on a chest X-ray or computerized tomography (CT) scan.
Lymphedema is a condition in which a part of the body, most often the arms or legs, is severely swollen due to an accumulation of protein and fluid in the affected area. When lymph vessels are unable to properly return lymph fluid back into circulation swelling occurs.
Lymphoma is cancer that occurs in the cells of the lymphatic system (immune system), a network of lymph nodes and lymph vessels that carry lymph fluid, nutrients, and waste throughout tissues and the bloodstream. The spleen, bone marrow and thymus gland are also apart of the lymphatic system.
Bicuspid aortic valve is a defect in the heart’s aortic valve that is present at birth (congenital). Some medical experts suggest it may be caused by a connective tissue disorder similar to that which causes the heart and blood vessel problems in Marfan syndrome.
A person with myoclonus experiences sudden, involuntary lightning jerks. Myoclonus may develop in response to various conditions, including prolonged oxygen deprivation to the brain, infection, head or spinal cord injury, stroke or brain tumors.
Often, the first step in treating stroke is the administration of a clot-busting intravenous medication called tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). Typically administration must occur within three hours of symptom onset.
Obesity occurs when the body has accumulated too much body fat. When an individual’s ideal body weight based on age, gender and height is greater than 30 percent they may be obese. Being overweight may not mean that you are obese. You may be overweight from extra muscles or having bigger bones.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a disorder that afflicts more than 12 million people in the United States. It takes its name from the Greek word apnea, which means "without breath." People with obstructive sleep apnea literally stop breathing repeatedly during their sleep due to closure of their airway.
Osteoporosis is a process that develops within the bones and makes them fragile and more likely to fracture. Anyone can develop osteoporosis, but it is common in older women. According to studies, 25 percent of men and 50 percent of women over the age of 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis.
Ovarian cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow in one or both of the ovaries in the female reproductive system. Epithelial ovarian cancer which forms on the surface of the ovary, is the most common type. Another less common type is germ cell tumors which begin in egg cells.
Overactive bladder is the frequent need to urinate along with a feeling that the urge to urinate cannot be delayed. Even though overactive bladder is common in older adults, it is not a natural part of the aging process. It can lead to urinary incontinence.
Pancreatic cancer, also called exocrine cancer, forms in the tissue of the pancreas, an organ in the digestive system located in the abdomen. Endocrine cells in the pancreas create enzymes used to digest fats and proteins, and exocrine glands create insulin and hormones to help balance the amount of sugar in the blood.
Parkinson's disease is a progressive disorder of the central nervous system affecting more than 1.5 million people in the United States. Clinically, the disease is characterized by a decrease in spontaneous movements, gait difficulty, postural instability, rigidity and tremor.
Parkinsonism refers to a group of motor system disorders. The most common type is Parkinson’s disease (PD). Individuals with parkinsonism may have symptoms that include tremor, slowed movement, stiffness and impaired balance.
Pelvic organ prolapse is when a pelvic organ moves from its “normal” place in the body and pushes against the walls of the vagina. The most common organ associated with prolapse is the bladder. Additional organs include the urethra, uterus, vagina, small bowel and rectum.
Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) refers to diseases of blood vessels outside of the heart and brain. It is often a narrowing of vessels that carry blood to the legs, arms, stomach or kidneys. Varicose veins are an example of PVD in the veins.
Pregnancy and childbirth are major events in a woman’s life and bring about a wide range of physical and emotional changes. Life with a new baby can be thrilling and exciting, but a woman may also experience feelings of sadness, anxiety, fear or confusion.
Pregnancy is the development of an embryo or fetus that leads to the birth of a child. Twin, triplets and multiple can occur when more than one embryo or fetus is being carried. Full term pregnancy lasts for 38 to 42 weeks and is cared for in stages of one to three trimesters.
Prostate cancer occurs in the prostate gland in the male reproductive system. According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), more than 200,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in the United States this year. Sixty-five percent of all prostate cancers are found in men ages 65 – 69.
Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a neurological disorder characterized by unpleasant sensations in the legs and an uncontrollable urge to move when at rest in an effort to relieve these feelings. RLS affects as many as 12 million Americans.
According to studies, 10% of the US population suffers from some form of lower back pain. Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction, one type of lower back pain, is typically caused by abnormal motion in the sacroiliac joint, either too much motion or too little motion.
Nearly 1.5 million people in the U.S. suffer from aortic valve stenosis - one of the most common and serious heart valve conditions.
About 80 percent of pregnant women experience some nausea during the first trimester of pregnancy. Between three to five women in 1,000 develop such severe nausea and vomiting that weight loss and dehydration can jeopardize their health and the health of the baby.
A skin injury or wound can be open, closed or torn. Wounds that are open run the risk of infections and closed wounds can lead to tissue damage.
A soft tissue injury (STI) can occur from a sprain, strain, contusion or overuse of a particular body area where muscles, ligaments and tendons have become damaged.
Skin cancer or melanoma forms in the melanocytes, cells found in the skin that produce melanin that tans the skin. Overexposure to the sun can cause melanocytes to cluster forming pink, tan, or brown moles. If moles begin to change shape, color or size they may be cancerous.
A person with spasticity feels unusual tightness or stiffness of muscles that results from abnormal muscle tone. Spasticity may occur in multiple sclerosis, a condition when the body’s immune system attacks the nervous system, or in other conditions.
Stomach cancer, also called gastric cancer, forms in the tissues lining the stomach, an organ in the digestive system. Stomach cancer grows slowly over time and can spread to the lymph nodes and also reach the liver, lungs and bones. It is more common in countries outside of the United States.
More than 700,000 Americans will suffer a stroke—or “brain attack”—this year. Of this number, 200,000 will be recurrent strokes. A stroke can injure the brain like a heart attack can injure the heart. A stroke occurs when an area of the brain doesn't get the blood it needs.
Every minute counts for stroke patients and knowing how to B.E. F.A.S.T. can lead patients to the stroke treatments they desperately need. Potentially life-saving medication can be administered within three hours of the sudden symptom onset to reverse stroke.
Sudden cardiac death (also known as sudden cardiac arrest) occurs from a sudden loss of heart function where the heart stops (cardiac arrest) and blood stops circulating in the body.
Testicular cancer occurs in one or both testicles in the male reproductive system. There are many types of testicular cancer—germ cell tumors are the most common. According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), more than 7,000 men will be diagnosed each year with testicular cancer in the United States.
An aneurysm is an abnormal widening or ballooning of a portion of an artery due to weakness in the wall of the blood vessel. A thoracic aortic aneurysm occurs in the part of the body's largest artery (the aorta) that passes through the chest.
Thyroid cancer occurs in the thyroid gland, an organ located in the throat near the Adam’s apple. This small gland produces hormones to regulate the metabolism, heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature. At times, lumps or nodules may form in the thyroid.
A patient with tremor experiences involuntary, rhythmic muscle contraction and relaxation (oscillations or twitching) of one or more body parts. It is the most common of all involuntary movements and can affect the hands, arms, eyes, head, vocal chords, trunk and legs.
An ulcer is a sore that forms on the top layers of skin or tissue. Ulcers commonly develop in the mouth and stomach.
Urinary incontinence is the loss of bladder control. The severity can range from occasional drops of urine to regular leakage that soaks your clothing.
Uterine cancer forms in the uterus (the womb) in the female reproductive system, and usually occurs after menopause. Uterine cancer is the fourth most common type of cancer for women after breast, lung and colon cancers.
Uterine fibroids are benign, non-cancerous, growths — within or on the muscular walls of the uterus or womb. As many as 20 to 40 percent of women over the age of 35 have fibroids. They can be caused by a combination of genetic, hormonal or environmental factors; however the true cause is unknown.
Varicose veins are dilated veins that have lost their valve effectiveness and become elongated, bulged and thickened. Veins carry blood from the capillaries to the heart. In the leg, this means the blood has to flow upward, against gravity. These veins have one-way valves to prevent the blood from flowing backwards.
Presentations from the 13th Annual Women's Heart & Stroke Seminar
A wound is an injury of the skin that can be open, closed or torn. Wounds can occur from an incision, laceration, abrasion, contusion or puncture. Chronic, non-healing wounds are wounds that do not heal properly or take a long time heal.
This condition is due to multiple, ulcerated, atherosclerotic plaques, which are lined with thrombus of the thoracoabdominal aorta, and is associated with an irregularly shape of the aortic wall at angiography and CT, known as the “shaggy aorta” syndrome.
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