Coronary Artery Disease


Dr. Shelley Wall, Dr. John Wong.


Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator.


Two-page spread in a popular science magazine.


Lay audience; courtroom judge.


Make an editorial spread that depicts the pathogenesis and clinical consequences of coronary artery disease. Since CAD is so common, but has been popularly associated with older men, I also aimed to use inclusive language and patient representation in my spread. Special thanks to Colleen Tang Poy for helping me workshop the text.


Last updated in December, 2018.

Preliminary research and tissue concept art
Rough layouts
Colour studies
Digital painting

Despite there being numerous readily-available visualizations of CAD and atherosclerosis, most illustrations of the components of fibrous plaques are highly abstracted, and do not show 3D relationships. Using visual references and description, I tried to depict these structures with enough realism and that they could be easily identified and contextualized in 3D space.

Final layout and composition

Agur, A. M. R., & Dalley, A. F. (2017). Grant’s atlas of anatomy, 14th Ed. Philadelphia: Wolters-Kluwer.

Buja, L. M., & Krueger, G. R. F. (2004). Netter’s illustrated human pathology. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier. 29, 50.

Chilton, R. J. (2004). Pathophysiology of Coronary Heart Disease: A Brief Review. JAOA, 104(9), 55–58.

Krstic, R. V. (1991). Human microscopic anatomy. Berlin: Springer-Verlag. 48-49.

Maas, A. H. E. M., & Appelman, Y. E. A. (2010). Gender differences in coronary heart disease. Netherlands Heart Journal, 18(12), 598–602.

Sakakura, K., Nakano, M., Otsuka, F., Ladich, E., Kolodgie, F. D., & Virmani, R. (2013). Pathophysiology of atherosclerosis plaque progression. Heart Lung and Circulation, 22(6), 399–411.

Statistics Canada. (2018). Leading causes of death, total population, by age group and sex, Canada, annual. Geography: Canada.

Suhalim, J. L., Chung, C. Y., Lilledahl, M. B., Lim, R. S., Levi, M., Tromberg, B. J., & Potma, E. O. (2012). Characterization of cholesterol crystals in atherosclerotic plaques using stimulated Raman scattering and second-harmonic generation microscopy. Biophysical Journal, 102(8), 1988–1995.

University of Ottawa Heart Institute. (n.d.). Coronary Artery Disease (Atherosclerosis).

University of Ottawa Heart Institute. (2017). Acute Coronary Syndrome.

Wang, T., & Butany, J. (2017). Pathogenesis of atherosclerosis. Diagnostic Histopathology, 23(11), 473–478.


Xu, S., Bendeck, M., & Gotlieb, A. I. (2015). Vascular Pathobiology: Atherosclerosis and Large Vessel Disease. In Cardiovascular Pathology: Fourth Edition.

  • Instagram icon
  • LinkedIn icon
  • Twitter icon
  • Arstation icon
  • Redbubble | © 2020 Mona Y. Li. All rights reserved.