At what age should my children be tested for FH?

4 Replies

  • There are other people on this site who have personal experience of children and FH, however for a year I was told it was a possibility and my first thought was for my daughters who actually were all in their twenties.

    Looking back on the whole experience I suppose the main question is, if I know they have FH, what do I want to do about it and do I want them to take statins. If you visit the FH Facebook group the concensusus feeling is early treatment with statins to eliminate their cardiac threat..but that group has an international input and I did read (somewhere!) that UK specialists tend to be more conservative in prescribing statins for children.

    Maybe the upcoming FH event in Wakefield could help you. Personal opinion, these issues need addressing, more research is needed to target families most at risk.

  • I suggest that if you know or suspect you have FH then it would be wise to have your children tested for high cholesterol at puberty (say 12 ish). Much before and the body is too much in a state of flux to warrant it. If your children have high cholesterol then you need to take advice and should (in my opinion) consider statins.

    I have FH and have been treated for it for over 15 years. My daughter, now 18, was tested for high cholesterol at around 12. She had a similar profile to mine and was put on Simvastatin, with no noticeable side affects since. She is aware that if she becomes pregnant or intends to become pregnant then she will need to pause the statins for a while.

    Simvastatin is one of the older statins and is well understood. For me the opportunity of giving my child the option of a few extra decades of quality life was important, and the downside risks minimal. As vascular disease is slow and cumulative in its effects the sooner treatment starts the less damage will accumulate.

    Once your children are 18 then the decision is theirs. To my mind, however, people will FH should inform family members who may also be affected, and this would apply to my children too if they were older. I would want to encourage my children to take advice and adopt statins. You may feel differently about directing your children - that's fine, but I would encourage you to give them the choice.

    Remember I am not medical, though my daughter and I have been guided by an experienced FH consultant specialist throughout.

    Hope this helps,


  • First port of call I would have thought would be your GP. If he/she is trusted by you then you must disclose your worries and he/she will be able to advise and inform you of the choices you have. If I had FH in my family, I would want to have all the information I can have at my fingertips to make the correct decisions for my children.Getting as much information about FH as possible from the net is fine but you must make decisions for YOUR family based on the knowledge your GP has about all of you. All the very best and let us know how you get on.

  • My son was tested at age 12 and my daughter, age 7 which was a year ago. Both have FH. I have, so far, said no to statins for both as no history of heart disease in my family. I do take statins myself and am sure they will start on medication at some time.

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