• By Dana Sparks

Research Unravels Rare Heart Condition

July 17, 2012

Mayo Clinic researchers are beginning to unravel a heart condition that strikes young, healthy women. It's called spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD), a separation of the layers of the artery wall that can block normal blood flow into and around the heart.

Cardiovascular interventionalist Rajiv Gulati, M.D., Ph.D., says, “SCAD is not related to plaque buildup that more commonly causes coronary blockages; it’s a completely different disease process. These patients are typically young, fit and healthy, and they are blown away by a totally unexpected heart attack.”

Researchers believe the condition may be more common than initially thought and suspect many heart attacks caused by SCAD have been mislabeled as cholesterol blockages. They've also found a surprising link to fibromuscular dysplasia, another rare condition that causes a narrowing in some arteries.

Read entire news release here.

Soundbites with Dr. Gulati are located in the downloads below.

Expert title for broadcast cg: Dr. Rajiv Gulati, Mayo Clinic Cardiologist  

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