Any problem with the aorta can be devastating. but exactly how serious is calcification of the abdominal aorta? Calcification of the aorta is when the walls of the abdominal aorta are hardened. The hardening or the abdominal aorta can be caused by smoking, diagnosed diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels along with genetic factors.
Calcification of the abdominal aorta is also know as atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. Plaque will build up on the internal walls of the arteries and reduce blood flow throughout the body and limit the amount of oxygen carried to the organs. The plaque build-up can be caused by the reasons listed above.
There is a liner in the abdominal aorta called the endothelium, which is a thin layer of cells that keep the inner wall of the arteries smooth. This allows for a clear passage for the blood to flow through the abdominal artery at a regular pace. When the smoking, high blood pressure and the other factors listed above come into play, they damage and wear away at the lining that protects the interior aorta walls, causing reduced blood flow to the body.
Calcification of the abdominal aorta is a very serious condition since it can lead to other heart and blood flow related problems. Heart attacks, peripheral vascular disease and strokes are primarily caused by some level of calcification of the arteries. Calcification doesn't happen in just one area or artery of the body. If there is calcification in the abdominal aorta, there is a very high chance other arteries are calcified as well.