Heart disease, light micrograph

Heart disease, light micrograph

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Credit: ISM/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Heart disease. Light micrograph showing the wall of a coronary artery that has become calcified due to age and atherosclerosis. Calcification occurs when calcium deposits build up in the tissue. Atherosclerosis is a condition in which an artery wall thickens as a result of the accumulation of fatty materials such as cholesterol, forming an atheromatous plaque. This causes the internal lumen (space) to narrow and can restrict blood flow, causing raised blood pressure. Over time the plaque itself may become calcified, as seen here. Magnification: x556, when printed 10 cm wide.

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