Ask an expert

11 Dec 2012

Heart Attacks
Hi Docter Burger.

We all know that a heart attack is the result of a norrowed or blocked artery on the muscle of the heart due to cholesterol deposits and/or narrowed blood vessels.

Since we have much smaller arteries in our bodies such as in the eyes, brain, lungs etc, why is only the hearts arteries affected and narrowed.

Maybe a silly question, sorry.

Answer 325 views

01 Jan 0001


The heart has a set amount of arteries. When one artery is blocked, there is no time for collateral arteries to develop, as the blockage results in immediate tissue damage. Lipid deposits affects all small arteries, especially in the eyes and brain. In other parts of the body, the tissue will develop collateral blood flow, bypassing the blockage. In areas where the small arteries that are blocked, like in the eyes, brain and heart, the damage is immediate and devastating.


Dr Anrich
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
30% - 9645 votes
70% - 22646 votes