Latest News

What's New

Recent Articles

News

IHSA website launch

International Heart Spasms Alliance (IHSA) was founded by a group of four women which had a common goal: to do better. Terri Shumaker, Cindy McCall, Sarah Brown, and Annette Pompa all live in different parts of the world and have never met face-to-face.

Over a period of five years, these women have created and participated in different Facebook support groups which united them in a common purpose. They may have different backgrounds and experiences, but this medical condition appears to be as elusive as a unicorn in fairyland. There is no cookie cutter approach because each person is unique and does not present the same symptoms.

Read More »
Research

International standardization of diagnostic criteria for microvascular angina

Standardization of diagnostic criteria for ischemic symptoms due to coronary microvascular dysfunction (CMD) is needed for further investigation of patients presenting with anginal chest pain consistent with “microvascular angina” (MVA).

At the annual Coronary Vasomotion Disorders International Study Group (COVADIS) Summits held in August 2014 and 2015, the following criteria were agreed upon for the investigative diagnosis of microvascular angina…

Read More »
Research

Contemporary Diagnosis and Management of Patients With Myocardial Infarction in...

Myocardial infarction in the absence of obstructive coronary artery disease is found in ≈5% to 6% of all patients with acute infarction who are referred for coronary angiography. There are a variety of causes that can result in this clinical condition.

As such, it is important that patients are appropriately diagnosed and an evaluation to uncover the correct cause is performed so that, when possible, specific therapies to treat the underlying cause can be prescribed.

Read More »
Research

The Who, What, Why, When, How and Where of Vasospastic...

Ischemic heart disease involves both “structural” and/or “functional” disorders of the coronary circulation. Structural atherosclerotic coronary artery disease (CAD) is well recognized, with established diagnostic and treatment strategies. In contrast, “functional CAD” has received limited attention and is seldom actively pursued in the investigation of ischemic heart disease.

Vasospastic angina encompasses “functional CAD” attributable to coronary artery spasm and this “state of the art” consensus statement reviews contemporary aspects of this disorder.

Read More »
Research

Systemic microvascular dysfunction in microvascular and vasospastic angina

Coronary microvascular dysfunction and/or vasospasm are potential causes of ischaemia in patients with no obstructive coronary artery disease (INOCA). We tested the hypothesis that these patients also have functional abnormalities in peripheral small arteries.

Patients were prospectively enrolled and categorised as having microvascular angina (MVA), vasospastic angina (VSA) or normal control based on invasive coronary artery function tests incorporating probes of endothelial and endothelial-independent function (acetylcholine and adenosine).

Read More »
Research

An EAPCI Expert Consensus Document on Ischaemia with Non-Obstructive Coronary...

This consensus document, a summary of the views of an expert panel organized by the European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions (EAPCI), appraises the importance of ischaemia with non-obstructive coronary arteries (INOCA).

Angina pectoris affects approximately 112 million people globally. Up to 70% of patients undergoing invasive angiography do not have obstructive coronary artery disease, more common in women than in men, and a large proportion have INOCA as a cause of their symptoms.

Read More »
Around The World

Real Patient Stories

Arthur’s story

My name is Arthur. I am a Scot but have lived in London for nearly forty years.

In 2014, I had my first heart attack. In the following six years, I went to A&E at least twice a year. Every time, I was sent home and was told it was reflux.

My own doctor in about 2015/16 put me on half an angina pill. When I was in hospital, I was told by the cardiology doctors that I did not need it as I never had angina at all.

Read More »

Barbara’s story

I am a 62-year-old retired physician. My story began at age 47.

I was a very busy practicing OB/Gyn physician who was otherwise healthy.

I was on call at the hospital, and it was turning out to be one of the busiest days I had ever experienced as a physician. I was in a medical group that took call for 24 hours straight, most of the time working the entire 24 hours.

Halfway through that 24-hour call, I was in the operating room doing a C/Section on a patient. Halfway through the surgery I began to feel crushing chest pain.

Read More »

Charlotte’s story

While at work in September 2014, I lost vision of my left eye and had terrible feeling of “heat” all over the left side of my body.

The ER ophthalmologist directed me to cardiology for a vascular problem.

A week later, I could not walk 100 meters (325 feet) without crushing chest pain and shortness of breath.

I was no longer functional. Making my bed was all I could do in a whole day. I was no longer an active 54-year-old.

Read More »

Get Informed

Learn all about the symptoms, causes and triggers of these heart conditions.

Educate. Inform. Enlighten.