Cardiac Question #27


A client is admitted for observation following complaints of intermittent chest pain while mowing the grass. The pain persisted for an hour following the activity. All cardiac labs, electrocardiogram, and radiologic studies were normal and the client was provided nitroglycerin for a new diagnosis of angina pectoris. Discharge education includes information that angina is most often attributable to what cause?


  1. Decreased workload on the heart
    • Rationale:
  2. Atrial Septal defect
    • Rationale:
  3. Infarction of the myocardium
    • Rationale:
  4. Coronary arteriosclerosis
    • Rationale:



Arteriosclerosis affects coronary arteries because of narrowing of vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients from the heart to the rest of the bodies. Diminished oxygen from reduced blood flow in arteries supplying the heart muscle cause chest pain. Chest pain that is unrelieved may progress to myocardial infarction from sudden rupture of plaque or obstruction of blood flow. Angina is not caused by decreased workload on the heart. Decreased workload on the heart should be a goal for a client who learns behaviors and activities that reduce workload and improve cardiac pump effectiveness. Septal defects are not a common cause of angina.

Learning Outcomes

Test Taking Tip

Video Rationale