How do arteries change with age?

1 Answer
Aug 22, 2016

I can think of three changes: thicker, stiffer, and less flexible arteries, rougher inner surface of arteries, and less receptive baroreceptors.


1. The arteries become thicker, stiffer, and less flexible.

Since the arterial walls are no longer as elastic, blood pressure increases more when the heart contracts. Thus, older people often have systolic hypertension.

2. The inner surfaces of arteries become roughened.

This causes an increased risk of thrombus formation and the development of fatty plaques. These, in turn, can increase the likelihood of heart attack or stroke.

3. The baroreceptors in the arteries become less sensitive.

Thus, blood pressure increases quickly a person rises from the horizontal, causing an increase in dizziness and falling.