Common Pathologies Of The Cardio-Vascular System

Published on 20th January 2020



The  muscles of the heart have their own blood supply and when constricted chest pain can occur.  

This pain can feel tight, dull or heavy and can spread to the left arm, neck, jaw or back.

Stable angina is usually caused by physical exertion or stress and stops with rest.

Unstable angina is more serious and more unpredictable and can continue despite resting.


When an artery wall weakens it can bulge, or become distended. This is particularly serious when it affects the arteries supplying the brain and the heart as it can rupture causing internal bleeding

An aortic aneurysm affects the body’s main artery. 

Common signs and symptoms include:Sudden and extremely severe headache, Nausea and vomiting, Stiff neck, Blurred or double vision, Sensitivity to light, Seizure, A drooping eyelid. loss of consciousness, Confusion

Although aneurysms can appear anywhere in the brain, they are most common in arteries at the base of the brain.


Cancer is when abnormal cells divide in an uncontrolled way.  Leukaemia is cancer of the body's blood-forming tissues, including the bone marrow, white blood cells and the lymphatic system. White blood cells multiply and crowd out the oxygen carrying red blood cells. Some forms of leukaemia are more common in children. Early signs can be flu like symptom with fever, night sweats and fatigue, loss of appetite and weight loss.

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

A deep vein thrombosis is a blood clot that can travel around the body and cause serious problems in the heart (a heart attack) or the brain (a stroke). Causes of a DVT include damage to the inside of a blood vessel due to trauma or other conditions, changes in normal blood flow, or a rare state in which the blood is more likely than usual to clot (hypercoagulability). There is an association with long haul flights.

Symptoms of DVT in the leg are throbbing or cramping pain in 1 leg, usually in the calf or thigh; swelling in 1 leg; warm skin around the painful area; red or darkened skin around the painful area; swollen veins that are hard or sore to the touch.  These can also occur in your arm or stomach.

Treatment can include anticoagulant medicine such as warfarin or rivaroxaban.


A bruise is a common type of haematoma- a localised bleeding outside of blood vessels, due to either disease or trauma including injury or surgery

In most cases  with movement, the hematoma eventually dissolves; however, in some cases they may continue to grow such as due to blood seepage or show no change. Surgery may be required if the blood does not disappear.


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