Cholesterol Support
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Do I really have FH

3 years ago I mentioned to my go that my dad had his first heart attack at the age of 32. I was 32 at the time. I was sent for a cholesterol test. I am 5ft 2 and weigh 9 stone. It came back as a total of 7.5. They told me it was genetic and sent me for tests on my heart which were all clear. I was then given a prescription for atorvastatin and told I would be on them for life. At a routine check up a year later I was told my 3 children also needed testing. Yesterday they had blood tests for cholesterol ( that’s how long it took for a hospital appointment) I was told that I should have had the genetic test and I until they have my result they won’t do the test on my children. I’m now starting to think that maybe I don’t have FH and that my cholesterol was just high and that I have spent the last 3 years worrying that I have passed this to my children. Is 7.5 really a sign of FH. On reading posts on here mine seems quite low in comparison. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you Michelle

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Not an expert - but 7.5 really doesn’t sound all that high to me. I was tested a few years ago and my cholesterol was 8.4 or something. I was put on Crestor, and the doctor told me I would have to be on this for life! After a few months my legs started feeling more and more stiff and achy, and walking became increasingly difficult. I saw my doctor, and he explained that this was a side effect of the Crestor, and advised to stop for a month and see if I felt better. That’s when I started investigating statins, and found out about all their frightening side effects. Such as a greatly increased risk of breast cancer in women, diabetes, permanent muscle damage (necrotising myopathy), etc. etc. I immediately decided that I would never take another statin. Something else to consider is that more and more evidence is coming to light that ‘high cholesterol’ really isn’t always the boogeyman it’s made out to be. It’s only in very specific cases where cholesterol particles have oxidised and heart issues are already present that cholesterol-lowering drugs may be needed. Another thing to consider is that low cholesterol is often more dangerous than high cholesterol. Just my experience, but of course the decision is up to you!

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Please post all your figures eg total, HDL LDL Triglycerides

Also find out you Lp(a) and your APO A and APO B along with your CRP and Homocysteine levels

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Best to provide ALL your recent blood tests results, inc thyroid if you have them. And include the reference ranges of each test too because the labs use different reference ranges.

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If a medical professional concluded that you have FH from the fact your father had a heart attack at age 32 and your total cholesterol level is 7.5 mmol/l, even after seeing the results of a 'clean heart test' - whatever that is (you need to specify what this test was - an angiogram perhaps?), then he/she is not doing their job well. Half of all heart attacks and strokes occur to people with normal to 'optimal' cholesterol levels - therefore an elevated cholesterol level on its own, even with a family history of heart disease, does not imply an imminent risk for heart attack and stroke, or the existence of FH.

Before putting a patient on dangerous medications like statins, it is important to first address a patient's dietary and nutritional profile, as well as lifestyle. Secondly, to determine the risk of impending heart attack or stroke a blood test must be done to identify the values of the following blood measures or biomarkers:

- fibrinogen - blood platelet stickiness

- homocysteine - tendency for blood to coagulate

- MPO - Myeloperoxidase - measures for inflammation in the arteries

- Lp-Pla2 - measures for plaque vulnerability in your arteries

- Lp(a) - a lipoprotein that when present in higher volumes increases the risk of atherosclerosis.

- Apo B - a proxy measure for LDL-P (different from LDL-C which is what a normal lipid panel measures) - evidence* shows that LDL-P (number of LDL particles in your blood) plays a more critical role in the risk of atherosclerosis than does LDL-C (cholesterol volume).

If after assessing the preponderance of evidence using the above noted metrics it is concluded that you have increased risk of heart disease, then dietary and lifestyle modifications must be initiated immediately BEFORE statins are prescribed.

Let's look at the facts:

You are 126 lbs on a 5' 2" frame, I'm assuming you're a female - this puts you about 16 lbs overweight.

Being overweight is usually a result of a sub-optimal diet and lifestyle. It could also be hypothyroidism. If you do have this condition, understand that it is not necessarily permanent in nature. Diet, exercise, and nutritional supplementation can materially affect the optimal functioning of your thyroid.

Here are the conclusions from a study on this subject:

"In patients with hypothyroidism and gastrointestinal pathology, vitamin C improves the abnormalities in serum free T4, T3, and TSH concentrations. This approach is helpful in the management of these patients."

Source: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/246...

IF after 6 weeks of making dietary and lifestyle modifications and supplementing with high doses of vitamin C, as well as supplementing with vitamins B6, B9 (Folate or Folic acid), B12, Omega 3 fish oil, and vitamin E, - if you then repeat the tests above and still have elevated cholesterol metrics as noted with the advanced tests above, THEN, you MIGHT consider statins and the possibility of FH. The definitive determination of FH is a gene test - any conclusions drawn about this condition from just your standard lipid profile and family history are, at best, unreliable.

I contend that if you make such dietary and lifestyle modifications, coupled with appropriate supplementation, you have a good probability of correcting your current (and likely temporary) medical condition.

*https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2720529/

If you want assistance with determining what an optimal diet and lifestyle are as well as dosing for vitamin C, please send me a private message.

You may also choose to read from my other posts which can be found here:

healthunlocked.com/user/sos007

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Many thanks for all the comments. I do not know my exact blood results, but I will see if I can find these out. With regards the heart tests. I had a 72 hour ecg and then I had a stress test to determine if there was any damage. Thankfully all was clear. This is my frustration that I was basically told I have FH and given statins and told that was me for life. It’s only since exploring the avenue of my children’s potential of having this that I found out 1. I should have had a genetic test and 2. I should be under an FH clinic if the test determined I did in fact have FH. I am currently awaiting for an appointment for this genetic test. If it comes back negative then I will most definitely be stopping the statins and seeing a dietitian in order to keep my cholesterol within the Norma ranges.

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What's your most recent test result? If you're on Atorvastatin, you should be tested at least annually and I'd prefer every 2-4 months.

I agree with others that 7.5 ain't so high. I can top that easily and one relative can roughly double it!

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My cholesterol has reduced steadily over 3 years on atorvastatin. It is now at 4.3. My cardiologist gave me the reasoning that with my height, weight and age my cholesterol was high and would be for genetic reasons rather than diet hence my diagnosis and being put immediately on statins. I recall having my cholesterol tested at the age of 21 for a local clinical trial and it was 6.7 then and I was under 8stone.

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Just to say, I am not overweight and I’m in the ‘healthy weight’ bracket and I wear a uk size 8 so I don’t think my weight has anything to do with my cholesterol.

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Quite right. A very healthy weight 😊

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You may find this presentation useful

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I have had my children’s initial blood results and they look very good. My 14 year olds total cholesterol is 4.2, my 10 year old is 3.6 and my 8 year old is 4.9 so based on that they hope they are clear. Which begs the question that I do not in fact have FH. So all could be good news

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I think passing on FH is 50-50, so there's a 1 in 8 chance you could have FH but not pass it on to 3 children, which is far from impossible. Me and my 2 siblings all got it from one parent, which is also 1 in 8.

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