Atherosclerosis – This is a blockage of various arteries and veins with a lipid mass. In its early stages, Atherosclerosis is believed to be a problem that results from chronic inflammation. This is explained again in the inflammatory diseases section. However, heart disease is more than just a plumbing problem although that is how it was explained for decades. This matter is explained further in the Myocardial infarction section.
Bacterial Endocarditis – This disease is caused by the Streptococci that cause rheumatic fever and scarlet fever. This Streptococcus is always present in the oral cavity. It damages heart valves by attaching itself directly to the valves.
Stroke– Strokes occur when large embolisms in the arterial system become lodged in the capillaries of the internal capsule of the brain. The blockages cause hypoxia and subsequent nerve damage. It is worth noting that some strokes are due to ruptured arteries in the internal capsule of the brain.
Myocardial infarction (Heart Attack) – This is the classic heart attack. This occurs when there is an atherosclerosis type of blockage in a coronary artery. This partially blocks the artery. Then one of two things happens. Either an embolism lodges in the narrow constriction completing the blockage or the atherosclerotic plaque ruptures and completely blocks the coronary artery. Either way the artery is blocked and hypoxia and tissue damage result. Blockages of arteries by atherosclerotic plagues was never a very sound explanation for acute events like myocardial infarctions. The fact that these blockages could rupture was more to the point. But what causes the blockages to rupture? Just recently, new research showed that about one third of the atherosclerotic plagues studied were infected with three of the most common bacteria found in periodontal disease. (Actinobacillus Actinomycetemcomitans, Porphyrymonas Gingivalis, & Bacteroides Forsythus.) These bacteria would continue to multiply until they caused the plague to rupture. So, our germs are caught at the scene of the crime. Guilty!
Congestive Heart Failure – This is generally the result of a combination of heart valve damage like in Bacterial Endocarditis and blockage of coronary arteries with atherosclerotic type blockages