There are so many types of heart diseases that they are grouped into different families, according to the World Heart Federation. These families include rheumatic, hypertensive, ischemic, cerebrovascular and inflammatory heart diseases.
Rheumatic heart diseases include heart disease caused by rheumatic fever and diseases of the valves of the heart, according to the World Heart Federation. The patient may have been born with damaged valves, or he may have been damaged by radiation or medications.
Hypertensive heart diseases include aneurysm, atherosclerosis and hypertension, claims the World Heart Federation. Aneurysms are the ballooning of the walls of the blood vessels. In atherosclerosis, the walls of arteries become stiff with plaque, which can hinder the normal flow of blood. Hypertension makes people more at risk for heart disease. Peripheral arterial disease is caused by atherosclerosis. It causes the blood vessels in the legs to narrow or be blocked altogether.
Ischemic heart disease is caused when not enough blood gets to the heart, according to the World Heart Federation. Atherosclerosis can also be a type of ischemic heart disease, as are angina, coronary heart disease, coronary artery disease, heart attack and sudden death. Cerebrovascular disease occurs when blood vessels can no longer supply blood to the heart or, in the case of stroke, the brain. Inflammatory heart disease is caused when the heart muscle, the pericardium or the valves become stiff, inflamed, infected or damaged.
Some people are also born with heart conditions. Heart failure occurs when the heart still pumps blood, but not enough blood for the needs of the other organs.