A myocardial bridge happens when a coronary artery is surrounded by the heart’s muscle. Typically, the coronary artery lies on top of the heart. People are born with a myocardial bridge and about one-third do not realize that they have the condition.
A myocardial bridge can become a serious heart condition when a myocardial ischemia, or lack of oxygen to the heart, occurs. This can happen when the heart beats and squeezes the artery’s myocardial bridge. Decreased blood flow can result, particularly during exercise when the heat is beating fast.
Usually, symptoms are felt during a myocardial ischemia, and include:
- Pain in the left arm or jaw
- Tightness in the chest or chest pain