Ace Inhibitor- A drug used to treat high blood pressure, and used in patients with heart failure.
Atherosclerosis- deposits of fatty substances, cholesterol etc. that build-up inside the lining of the blood vessels causing them to become thick and hardened.
Alteplase - A tissue plasminogen activator made by recombinant DNA technology, used in fibrinolytic therapy for acute myocardial infarction and as a thrombolytic to treat acute ischemic stroke.
Amiodarone - An antiarrythmic drug used to treat fast, irregular heartbeats that come from the atria and/or ventricle.
Angina pectoris- Chest pain that usually occurs as a result of coronary artery disease that is causing restriction of blood flow to the heart.
Angioplasty - A procedure to treat the narrowing of the coronary arteries.
Antiarrhythmic agent- a group of drugs that treat various heart arrhythmias.
Anticoagulant - A medication that reduces or impairs the ability of the blood to forma clots. This drug is also called blood thinners.
Aortic Valve Stenosis- A narrowing of the aortic valve caused by calcifications deposited on the valve cusps. This narrowing limits the hearts ability to eject blood to the body normally.
ARB(Angiotensin-Receptor Blocker)- A drug used to block Angiotensin which causes narrowing of the blood vessels resulting in high blood pressure.
Atrial Fibrillation- A heart rhythm disorder that results in the top chambers of the heart (atria) having disorganized atrial activity which is fast and irregular. This may also result in the bottom chamber(ventricle) also to increase its rate.
Atrial Flutter- a heart rhythm disorder that is characterized by rapid and regular atrial activity. This pattern of electrical activity can be identified on an ECG.
Atherosclerotic plaque- a collection of fatty substances, cholesterol, and cellular waste products that can build up on the inner lining of an artery.
Atrial Tachycardia - term to describe an abnormally fast atrial rhythm. This may also cause the ventricles to also beat abnormally fats in response.
AV Node Ablation - The AV Node is located in between the upper and lower right sided chambers of the heart. This tissue slightly delays the electrical signal from the top chambers(atria) to allow the bottom chambers(ventricle) to fill. Some patient with atrial fibrillation have a fast ventricular response that is unable to be controlled with medication. Treatment with AVN ablation is accomplished with radiofrequency ablation where the AVN tissue is destroyed. The destruction of the tissue removes the electrical connection between the top and bottom chambers.
Balloon angioplasty-Angioplasty using a balloon-tip catheter that is inflated inside an artery, stretching the intima and leaving a ragged interior surface after deflation, which triggers a healing response and breaking up of plaque
Beta- Blocker - a group of drugs that block the B- adrenergic system that causes increased heart rate and cardiac contraction. This is a main drug for heart failure patients.
Biventricular Pacing- this is another term for cardiac resynchronization therapy(CRT) where both the right and left sides of the heart are paced.
Bradycardia- a slow heart rhythm.
Blood pressure- measurement of the force of blood against the artery walls. The blood pressure consists of two readings - the systolic and diastolic pressure. The systolic measurement is the maximum blood force against the artery, and the diastolic measurement is the minimum force against the artery.
Cardiac Output- the amount of blood that is ejected to the body in 1 minute. The average cardiac output is 5-6 Litres/minute.
Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy(CRT) - this device is used in heart failure patients to pace the right and left sides of the heart to help coordinated the hearts contractions.
Cardiomyopathy - is a disease of the heart muscle. The most common form of cardiomyopathy is dilated cardiomyopathy.
Cardioversion- application of an electrical shock to convert an abnormal heart rhythm back to normal. This therapy is available in implantable defibrillators(ICD) and cardiac resynchronization (CRT) devices.
Congestive Heart Failure- inability of the heart to pump effectively to meet the body's demands. With the hearts impaired ability to pump blood to other organs, fluid may accumulate in the lungs and other tissues causing swelling of the hands, legs and feet for example.
Coronary Arteries- these arteries surround the heart and supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood.
Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG)-A type of surgery that transplants a section of a vessel from another part of the body (usually the leg or breast) to make a detour around a blockage in a coronary artery (also called open heart surgery)
Digoxin- is a cardiac drug that helps the heart contract more forcefully, and may also slow the heart rate.
Dilated Cardiomyopathy - a disease of the heart muscle that causes it to become oversized. This enlargement does not allow the heart to effectively contract and pump the blood.
Diuretic- is a drug that helps get rid of extra fluid in the body by excreting it in the urine.
Electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG)-A recording of the electrical activity of the heart
Ejection Fraction- is the amount of blood that the heart can eject to the body in one heartbeat. It is stated as a percentage with the normal ejection fraction being 55-70%.
Facilitated angioplasty-A planned PCI (percutaneous coronary intervention) after fibrinolytic therapy.
Fibrinolysis-Therapy with clot dissolving drugs, also referred to as thrombolytic therapy
Glycoprotein IIB/IIIA-Antiplatelet glycoprotein drugs to prevent blood clotting
Heart Block - a group of Heart rhythm disorders where the electrical signals originating in the top chamber of the heart(right atria) of the heart get blocked or delayed to the ventricle. There are first, second, and third degree heart block. Treatment can be implantation of a pacemaker.
Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD)- is a device that is implanted in patients to prevent the risk of sudden cardiac death. This device has the ability to pace the heart if it beats too slowly as well as deliver an electrical shock to convert an abnormally fast heart beat back to normal.
Mitral regurgitation - is the backward flow of blood from the left ventricle into the left atrium caused by the inability of the mitral valve to open and close appropriately.
Myocardial infarction - is another term for a heart attack that occur as a result of a blockage of the coronary arteries that stops blood from flowing to the heart muscle and causes and area of tissue death and scarring.
Mortality rate - number of deaths usually expressed per 1,000 people.
Myocardial infarction-Necrosis of a portion of cardiac muscle caused by obstruction in a coronary artery
NYHA - New York Heart Association. NYHA has four categories to classify heart failure patients, with NYHA 1 being the mildest form of heart failure and NYHA IV as the most severe form of heart failure.
Pacemaker - is a device that is implanted in the chest to prevent the heart from beating too slowly. The device is connected to a lead or leads that are placed in the heart to send an electrical signal which causes the heart to contract.
Percutaneous coronary intervention-A type of heart procedure that includes a balloon angioplasty (percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty) and stents. The balloon is used to open a blocked artery. The stent is used to help keep the artery open after the balloon is removed
- Restoration of blood flow to an area that was ischemic (without a sufficient supply of blood, in cardiology usually due to a myocardial infarction or blocked artery)
Reteplase -A mutant of alteplase having a longer half-life than the parent compound, used as a thrombolytic agent to treatment myocardial infarction.
Remote Patient Monitoring - a patient with an implantable device may have the ability to be monitored in a remote location such as their home. Information may be sent via telephone or internet to a monitoring station to have the information from the device evaluated.
Revascularization- A procedure undertaken to restore blood flow to areas of the heart muscle not reached due to weakened or blocked arteries
Stent -A metal or plastic tube that is inserted into a coronary artery to prevent constriction and closure
Streptokinase - A thrombolytic agent to restore blood flow
Sudden Cardiac Death - is an unexpected death caused by cardiac causes.
Tenecteplase - A thrombolytic agent used to treat myocardial infarction that is administered over 5 seconds in a single dose
Thrombolysis - Therapy with clot-dissolving drugs given to dissolve a blood clot.
Thrombus - A blood clot inside the blood vessel.
Ventricular Tachycardia - is a rapid ventricular rate in the range of 100-300 beats/min.
Ventricular Fibrillation - a very rapid, disorganized, and dangerous heart rhythm in the range of 200-300 beats/min.