Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) Anatomy, Nursing, Heart Disease, Pathophysiology, Treatment Part 1

Coronary artery disease (also called coronary heart disease) NCLEX lecture video on the nursing, anatomy, pathophysiology, treatment, and signs and symptoms of coronary artery disease. CAD is the build up of fatty plaques due to atherosclerosis that causes the arteries of the heart to become narrow. This leads to restrictive blood supply to the heart muscle which leads to chest pain (stable or unstable angina) to myocardial infraction (MI). The main coronary arteries that supply the heart with blood include the left and right coronary artery. The left coronary artery branches off into the left circumflex artery and left anterior descending artery. The right coronary artery branches off into the right marginal artery and posterior descending artery. If ischemia has been present for a long time collateral circulation can develop as well. This is where tiny blood vessels re-route the blood supply to the heart to pass the blockage. Signs and symptoms of heart disease include: chest pain (especially with activity and is relieved with rest which is known as stable angina), shortness of breath, and feeling very tired. Coronary artery disease is diagnosed in various ways: lipid profile which measures the cholesterol levels, EKG, stress test, and heart catheterization. CAD is treated with medications (discussed in part 2 of this series), heart catheterization (most commonly with stent placement) or coronary artery bypass graft surgery. Don’t forget to check out part 2 of this lecture which covers nursing interventions and pharmacology aspects of CAD.

Quiz on coronary artery disease:

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Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) is a condition characterized by the narrowing of the coronary arteries, which are responsible for supplying blood and oxygen to the heart muscle. This narrowing is caused by the buildup of plaque, a combination of cholesterol, fat, and other substances, on the inner walls of the arteries. As a result, the heart is not able to receive the necessary nutrients and oxygen, which can lead to chest pain, shortness of breath, and even heart attack.

From a nursing perspective, managing patients with CAD involves identifying risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and smoking. Nurses play a crucial role in educating patients on lifestyle modifications such as a healthy diet, regular exercise, and smoking cessation. They also monitor patients for signs and symptoms of CAD and work with healthcare providers to develop treatment plans.

CAD is a common type of heart disease and is a leading cause of death in the United States. The pathophysiology of CAD involves the gradual buildup of plaque in the coronary arteries, which can eventually lead to complete blockage. This blockage can cause a heart attack, a life-threatening condition that occurs when blood flow to the heart is completely cut off.

Treatment for CAD typically involves a combination of lifestyle modifications, medications, and surgery. Lifestyle modifications include a heart-healthy diet, regular exercise, and smoking cessation. Medications such as aspirin, beta-blockers, and cholesterol-lowering drugs can also be prescribed to manage CAD. In some cases, surgical procedures such as angioplasty, stenting, or bypass surgery may be necessary to restore blood flow to the heart.

Overall, CAD is a complex condition that requires a multidisciplinary approach to manage effectively. Nurses play a critical role in preventing and managing CAD and ensuring that patients receive the best possible care.


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