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High Cholesterol Message Board

High Cholesterol Board Index

Do you have any other risk factors for heart disease such as smoking, being overweight, high bloodpressure, high bloodsugar levels, or family history of heart disease or diabetes? If not, then I wouldn't worry based on the cholesterol numbers you posted.

Of all of the blood lipids, it is a low HDL level combined with a high triglyceride level that is the best indicator for heart disease risk. This is often expressed as the triglyceride/HDL ratio. A low ratio here indicates low risk of heart disease. Normal population levels are around 5.0, with low risk being a ratio of less than 2.0. With your high HDL level and moderately low triglyceride level, you have a ratio of <2.0 which places you at low risk.

Regarding your LDL levels, there are two LDL subclasses, pattern A and pattern B. Pattern A is considered the less dense of the two and does not have near the oxidation potential that pattern B has. A high percentage of pattern A LDL does not pose increased risk of heart disease. Pattern B on the other hand is much denser than pattern A and has a high potential for oxidation which increases the likelihood of artherosclerosis development. Also note that your LDL levels likely were not measured directly but rather just calculated via the following equation: LDL = Total Cholesterol - HDL - triglycerides/5. So, from this it is unknown whether your LDL is predominately pattern A or pattern B. But studies have shown that there is a strong positive correlation between triglyceride levels and LDL density. High triglyceride levels are a marker for high density LDL or pattern B. On the other hand, low triglyceride levels, which is what you have, indicate that your LDL is of the lower density or pattern A variety, which is considered benign for the most part with regard to heart disease risk. There are a few labs that can measure LDL subfractions. Before I would even remotely consider a statin drug, I would have my predominate LDL subclass determined. If it is pattern A, no way, considering your other risk markers are low. Even if it is pattern B, I would have signficant reservations about taking a statin drug considering the potential adverse side effects. Diet (cut out the junk food) and excercise would still be my first option.

Take some time and read through some of the old posts here. You can learn a lot here.


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