Just been toold I have 9.6 level cholesterol

I have just been told by my GP that my cholesterol levels are very high ( 9.6 total and 7.3 LDL ) This is after my first ever blood test ( I am 54 ). He immeediately put me on 40 mg statins and told me I would have to take them for the rest of my life. He also said this high a level is genetic .

I am worried my children may inherit this condition. Both my parents have high cholesterol so it seems to true what my gp says.

I am a bit shell shocked but fully intend to change my diet and exercise more .

Do I need to have my children tested ( they are girls of 18 and 13 ) and should my gp recommend this ?

Thanks in advance

15 Replies

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  • Yes to all your questions. But, before you get too anxious, please may I suggest that you contact HEART UK - the cholesterol charity. This was founded almost thirty years ago by two Mums who had just received similar news, with similar family histories.

    The good news is:

    1. You have been diagnosed before having a fatal heart attack

    2. Changing your lifestyle with diet and exercise is proved to help

    3. Statins are proven to help

    4. The inherited condition Familial Hypercholesterolaemia (FH) is the most commonly inherited genetic disorder known, so there are lots of us to help with first hand experiences

    5. If you have FH then each child has along 50/50 chance of inheriting it - or not

    6. If they inherit, then yours are young enough to make their life changes now, before much (if any) damage is done

    7. If they have not inherited, they cannot pass it on.

    In my Father's family of six siblings, five died young of heart attacks or strokes (long before anyone was aware of cholesterol levels). He had two daughters. I inherited, my sister did not. I have three children and (great news!!) not one of them has inherited. So, in our branch of the family, FH has died out.

    If you could make the Patients' Day at the HEART UK AGM at Bristol in July, you could meet other patients, the HEART UK staff, consultants from around the country and experts from around the world - and get all your questions answered.

    Hope this is of assurance to you.

  • Thanks for your reply YvonneD .

    My main concern are my children and I am surprised my GP did not recommend them being tested as I always thought prevention is better than a cure. Can I ask for us all to be tested in light of my results ?

    I have always been a keep fit fanatic and have been conscious of my diet but the last two years due to injury have been unable to train so have been inactive and a bit lazy and my diet has changed dramatically for the worse. I feel can get back to training and eating sensibly and hope this will help to lower my levels.

    I wil try to make it in July and hopefully get some more info.

    Thanks again

  • Some GPs are reluctant to test children. HEART UK will be able to supply you with the NICE guidelines on this, as ammunition when you ask your doctor to refer you to a lipid consultant.

  • Hi Chimba,,

    There was a similar question just recently! I would ask your GP if you can be referred to a lipid clinic (they come under different names such as metabolic clinics).

    The only way to tell if you definitely have FH is by genetic testing, and in England this is problematical to say the least! You might be lucky and live in Wales or Scotland.

    You might have FH or you might have some other inherited form of high cholesterol. You could certainly ask for your daughters to have their cholesterol tested with a simple blood test and then you would have a better idea if they are affected.

    Your levels could be a combination of age and genetics. Hope this helps, I had a similar story.

  • Thanks Aliwally

    I have been searching through this site and have noticed how hard it seems to get a genetic test done in England.

    I will make an appointment to see my GP asap and discuss my results in more detail as I left the surgery poorly informed and a bit shellshocked . I will also ask that my kids have a blood test and taker it from there .

    Thanks for your help

  • Chimba, I would reiterate the answer about attending a lipid clinic. My original cholesterol figure was 13, and I was given different drugs to try and reduce it. Statins may not be the answer, as in my case, I was diagnosed with Type 3 hyperlipidaemia and was eventually prescribed a fibrate drug. Some GP's always prescribe statins, but you really need to establish your condition with a lipid consultant asap. My cholesterol is now 4.3 by the way.

  • Hansi,

    Are you going to lower it even more? My total is 4.3, LDL - 2.12, but I heard from doctors that LDL level should be watched mostly to be 1.8 for risky patients.

  • No,I'm quite happy with 4.3.

  • Thanks Hansi

    It seems my next step is to revisit my GP and get my children tested and ask to be referred to a Lipid clinic.

    Thanks so much for all your help. Will keep you posted and wish you all well.

  • Hi,

    Did you get the results for all four, total cholesterol, HDL LDL and triglyceride? Have you considered life style change, food intake and exercise? First step is to look at food and lifestyle change before any medication as you are 54.

  • Hi, my go said if u have FH it is not due to diet because it is inherited

  • Hi,

    Another inportant test your childrer and you need to go for is an eye test, and request for cholesterol check.

  • You don't have to get your children tested for FH, in any case this would only be done if they detected it in you (so called cascade testing). What you could ask for is your daughters' cholesterol levels to be tested. I did this, and the girls were quite happy to have it done out of interest, even though one hates needles!

    Two were fine, my eldest had moderately raised levels, but probably due to the anti-convulsants she takes.

  • Hi,

    Please read the articles in the following link.

    dailymail.co.uk/health/arti...

    There are many more like this.

  • Thanks bala

    All I was told by my GP was my total is 9.3 with 7.6 " bad " cholesterol. i should have pressed for more info but was a bit shocked as he repeatedly told me it was very high and probably hereditarey and I was high risk. I wondered if putting me on Statins straight away but by all accounts it not a bad thing to take regardless ( hopefully without side affects )

    As far as eye tests are concerned I have them regularily and noproblems have been detected.

    Went for a 6 mile bike ride and have already dramatically changed my diet so hope these help.

    My main worry is my kids so I will get there blood tested as soon as poss .

    Thanks again

    Chimba

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