How does heart disease happen?

Heart disease occurs when plaque develops in the arteries and blood vessels that lead to the heart. This blocks important nutrients and oxygen from reaching your heart. Plaque is a waxy substance made up of cholesterol, fatty molecules, and minerals.

How does heart disease affect the body systems?

Heart disease can also affect your heart valves. Your valves may become too narrow to allow blood to flow forward, which can cause blood to flow backward into the heart. Heart valve problems can make you feel light-headed and fatigued. They can also cause chest pain and shortness of breath.

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