Postinfarction cardiosclerosis

Myocardial infarction is a major complication of myocardial infarction. It is characterized by the replacement of the lost muscle with connective (fibrous) tissue. This consequence is always evolving, the severity depends on the volume of the affected muscles of the heart. With a significant postinfarction cardiosclerosis a rupture of the connective tissue, followed by death.

What is cardio?

The term «infarction» defines the process of replacement of structures of the heart (mainly the heart muscle) and fibrous tissue. The development of such a process is due to the fact that the cells of the heart muscle (myocardium) are highly organized structures that are not capable of regeneration and recovery. Therefore, in the event of damage to and destruction of miocardiotita (myocardial cells) under the action of various causes, is their substitution by connective tissue.

The mechanism of development of postinfarction cardiosclerosis

The main cause of damage to the myocardial cells is their lack of food and oxygen. This is due to the fact that miocardiotita for their reductions require significant amounts of energy. They are very sensitive to starvation. By reducing the blood supply to first develop the processes of degeneration and dystrophy of the cells and their subsequent death. Myocardial infarction develops sudden deterioration of blood supply to the area of the myocardium due to blockage of coronary artery (vessels feeding the heart) a blood clot or embolus (an embolus is a blood soluble component, most often, the emboli can be formed from air bubbles as they enter the blood stream, fat droplets in case of considerable destruction of adipose tissue).

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The first few days in the area of dead cardiomyocytes inflammation develops that restricts them from healthy tissue. Then begin the process of proliferation of connective tissue with a gradual replacement of land of the lost myocardium. This process of formation of connective tissue scar usually lasts for about 3 weeks.

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Myocardial infarction is always a consequence of myocardial infarction, which mainly develops on the background of CHD (coronary heart disease). In a small number of cases, myocardial infarction may be subclinical without marked symptoms (the main symptom is severe pain in the region of the heart), so people may not know about the development of postinfarction cardiosclerosis.

The gradual replacement of the area of the myocardium by connective tissue multiple symptoms. They first point to the deterioration of the pumping function of the heart. Because connective tissue is not reduced, the cardiac output and the heart’s pumping function significantly reduced, which is manifested by such signs as:

  • Shortness of breath that increases during physical exertion – working skeletal striated muscle requires sufficient blood circulation and nutrient compounds and oxygen. In the conditions of insufficient activity of the heart and circulation is manifested by shortness of breath (compensation of the lack of oxygen in the tissues).
  • Dizziness and periodic headaches that causes reduction in the volume of blood flow in the brain.
  • Кардиосклероз постинфарктный

  • Tachycardia – rapid heartbeat, which is a compensatory mechanism. Due to impaired contractile function of the heart and improves General circulation due to the increased frequency of its contractions. This leads to a small increase in minute volume of blood.
  • Arrhythmia – a violation of rhythm of cardiac contractions caused by the substitution of the conducting nerve fibers connective tissue in the area of sinking of the area of the myocardium.
  • Bluish coloration (cyanosis) of the lips and nose – the result of insufficient blood oxygen saturation.
  • Swelling of the legs, usually worse in the evening – a sign of severely impaired activity of the heart on the background cardiosclerosis (heart failure). Also swelling may be accompanied by accumulation of free fluid in the main body cavities – pleural (hydrothorax), abdominal (ascites) cavity, the bag of the heart (hydropericardium).
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Such manifestations can develop in other pathologies of the heart, so the main point in the diagnosis of postinfarction cardiosclerosis is the fact that myocardial infarction, as well as additional methods of functional and instrumental studies.


To diagnose replacement of myocardium by connective tissue, the following methods of instrumental and functional studies:

  • Food – ultrasound cardiac imaging, which allows to determine directly cardiosclerosis, as well as its localization and size.
  • ECG (electrocardiography) is a functional study, which consists in registration of electric potentials of the heart. Also allows to determine the presence of replacement of myocardium by connective tissue, the degree of the pathological process and to suggest its localization. With the help of ECG examines the origin of the arrhythmia.

A diagnostic study to identify, determine the size and localization of postinfarction cardiosclerosis enables you to assign adequate therapy and to predict the further course of the disease.

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Main cause of death in post-infarction cardiosclerosis is the bursting of the connective tissue of the scar followed by the release of blood from the cavity of the heart in the pericardial SAC. Therefore, treatment is aimed at the prevention of this complication by reducing the functional load on the heart. For this purpose the normalization of blood pressure, heart rate, suppression of the arrhythmia. General preventive measures include avoiding harmful habits, dosed physical load (may be a gradual increase), proper nutrition with adequate intake of vitamins and enough rest and sleep.

Effective treatment of postinfarction cardiosclerosis is possible only after doctor’s appointments, made on the basis of objective research.