BSIP VEM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY BSIP VEM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Narrowing of coronary artery. Coloured angiogram of a narrowed coronary artery, a major cause of heart attack. The narrowing is the pinched part of the artery at the top. Such narrowing is caused by a build up of fatty deposits and dead cells on the inside wall of the artery (atherosclerosis). Abnormal clots sometimes form or lodge on top of these deposits, blocking blood flow to the heart's muscle. This leads to the death of part of the heart (myocardial infarction) and consequent heart attack. The green/brown area shows where part of the heart's muscle has died. This X-ray angiogram was made after injecting the patient's bloodstream with a substance that is opaque to X-rays.
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