‘Angina pectoris’ is the medical term for chest pain or discomfort due to coronary heart disease. Angina is a symptom of a condition called myocardial ischaemia. It occurs when the heart muscle does not get as much blood (hence, as much oxygen) as it needs. This usually happens because one or more of the heart’s arteries are narrowed or blocked. Angina also can occur in people with valvular heart disease, hypertropic
cardiomyopathy (enlarged heart), or uncontrolled high blood pressure. Angina is a sign that someone is at increased risk of heart attack, cardiac arrest, and sudden cardiac death. Antianginal drugs are medicines
that relieve the symptoms of angina pectoris.
Angina pectoris results from an imbalance between oxygen required and oxygen supplied to the ischemic region of the myocardium. Therefore, drugs that either reduce the need for oxygen in the myocardium or enhance oxygen supply are theoretically necessary for treating these states.