IIschemic heart failure (IHF) makes reference to a compendium of syndromes with diverse etiologies. They are intimately related and generally characterised by an imbalance between the incomes and the demands of oxygen and and other substrates in the cardiac tissue. This imbalance leads to a deficit in the production of ATP, necessary for cardiac contraction, and to an excessive accumulation of metabolic residue products. Generally, the obstruction of the blood flow at the level of a coronary artery is caused by accumulation of atheroma plaques and can be eventually shot by the detachment of unstable atheroma plaques. Three different clinical manifestations can appear that are, in a sort of increasing severity:
Angina pectoris. The blood supply becomes insufficient to satisfy an eventual increase of oxygen demand due to an effort or stress. It appears as a transitory chest pain provoked by the ischemia, but its consequences are reversible at tissue level if the normal blood flow is rapidly restored.
Acute myocardial infarction (AMI). The blood supply is completely avoided at the level of a coronary artery, leading to a permanent tissular ischemia. While death is not always happening, the cardiac tissue becomes necrotic, it looses its normal contraction capability and tissue damage turns into irreparable even when the blood flow is restored.
Sudden cardiac death.