What Causes Athersclerotic Calcification?


Quick Answer

Atherosclerosis calcification develops when macrophage white blood cells, lipids and calcium build up in the arteries and decrease blood flow. Risk factors for this condition include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking and high blood sugar levels, says Medical News Today.

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Full Answer

The macrophage white blood cells are the cells sent by the body's immune system to clean up pockets of cholesterol. However, when they stick to an artery, they emit a chemical that disrupts the natural exit of white blood cells from the area, explains Medical News Today. This eventually causes the build up of plaque. People with diabetes and people who live in places with a lot of air pollution are more likely to develop this condition.

Symptoms of this condition vary depending on the area of the body the afflicted veins are in. When the carotid arteries are affected, symptoms include weakness, difficulty breathing, head pain, numbness in the face and paralysis. If the coronary arteries are affected, some symptoms are vomiting, extreme anxiety, chest pain and coughing, says Medical New Today. If the blood supply to the renal arteries is limited, symptoms such as a loss of appetite, swollen hands or feet and problems with focusing may occur. Symptoms of peripheral artery issues include numbness in the legs, hair loss on legs or feet and weakness in the legs.

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