Wat are the symptoms of blockage in the arteries?

Not Medical Advice: Arterial blockage refers to a condition that can affect arteries in different areas of the body, most specifically in the heart (i.e., coronary arteries), the legs, and in the eyes (the central retinal arteries).

Common symptoms of blocked arteries in the heart may include shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, increased heart rate, heart palpitations, sweating, dizziness, and weakness. Symptoms that are sometimes more common in women than in men include chest discomfort, fatigue, and pain in the back or in the left arm. Coronary artery blockage is a common cause of heart attack.

Common symptoms with arterial blockage in the legs may include foot ulcers, gangrene, and pain when resting or walking; some, however, do not experience any symptoms. Circulatory blockage in the legs may be a sign of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and can be very dangerous; people with any of these symptoms should seek medical care immediately.

Arterial blockage in the central retinal artery of the eye may cause partial or complete vision loss. Vision loss may also occur with blockage in the central retinal vein as well, though normally only gradually and over the course of days or a week. In either case, the symptoms should be treated immediately as serious conditions such as glaucoma or bleeding may result.

In the news, George W. Bush was one of the most athletic U.S. presidents -- jogging, clearing brush on his Texas ranch and an avid mountain biker. But his recent heart problems were a lot more serious than previously thought, according to NBC News. What was described at the time as a routine procedure -- a blocked artery was found during a physical exam at the Cooper Clinic in Dallas -- was potentially life-threatening, according to a report in the National Journal recently. Find out more at NBC News.

Updated on Tuesday, October 29 2013 at 10:10AM EDT
Collection: arteries