JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Heart attack. Artwork of a human heart during a heart attack (myocardial infarction). Here, an embolus (red, in the sectioned artery at lower right) has blocked one of the coronary arteries where it has been narrowed by atherosclerosis. The artery can no longer supply the heart muscle with blood, causing the sudden tissue death or necrosis (dark red, lower right) of a heart attack. In atherosclerosis, fatty plaques of atheroma (yellow, lower right) develop in the inner lining of the artery. An embolus is a piece of material or gas bubble travelling in the blood supply that blocks an artery. Heart attacks are felt as sudden chest pain and can be fatal.
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