CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Digitised light micrograph of a cross-section through an atheroma plaque in a human artery. This condition often affects the coronary artery of the heart. The original wall of the artery runs around the frame of this image (orange). In the artery, plaque is composed of fatty cholesterol material (stained yellow) and fibrous connective tissue (blue). At centre right, the red oval is the existing, much narrowed lumen through which blood can flow. In addition to physically narrowing and blocking the arteries, atheroma plaques may cause thrombus (clot) formation, leading to a myocardial infarction or heart attack.
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