This site is intended for healthcare professionals

Go to /sign-in page

You can view 5 more pages before signing in


Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

Atherosclerosis is a patchy, focal disease of the intima and inner media of large and medium sized musculo-elastic arteries including the aorta.

Atherosclerosis is characterised by:

  • proliferation of:
    • smooth muscle cells
    • macrophages
    • fibroblasts
  • lipid deposition
  • and increase in ground substance and collagen
  • necrosis

These are the typical components of a mature atheromatous plaque.

There are a number of risk factors for the development of atherosclerosis. Some of these, e.g. age, sex and family history cannot be modified. Other risk factors such as serum cholesterol, smoking habits, and hypertension can be altered.

Related pages

Create an account to add page annotations

Annotations allow you to add information to this page that would be handy to have on hand during a consultation. E.g. a website or number. This information will always show when you visit this page.