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High Cholesterol Message Board


High Cholesterol Board Index


I've always had a history of borderline/high cholesterol. In July, my gynecologist did a non-fasting cholesterol test, and the level was 231 mg/dl. He sent me a list of low-cholesterol foods, and told me to check it in a year. In September, my cholesterol was also checked because I went on Accutane-- it was 234. Accutane can cause triglycerides and cholesterol levels to spike-- mine did, staying at 272. After Accutane, the levels should go back to normal, but my dermatologist and I decided to do a fasting lipid profile to be sure. It came back on Thursday, and was 321. We've always been aware of the family history of high cholesterol (my paternal grandma has it), and Dr. D told me to go see an internist and "get some Lipitor".

I was really freaked by this. I've been strictly following my Slim Fast diet for a month, and my family does not eat high cholesterol foods constantly. We use margarine, drink skim milk, eat red meat once a week at most, use only boneless pork loin when cooking pork, and used reduced fat dairy products. Dr. D told me that this is obviously heredity, and to stop beating myself up. He also said that my levels are not at a place yet where they would be a short-term concern, only a long-term concern.

My first question is: how important is it for me to see the doctor ASAP? Dr. D is sending me to his internist; "the doctor the doctors see". They both work in the same building, and he can check up on my case. He's also sending this doctor a letter and my chart... but the earliest appointment is in 5 weeks. I called Dr. D to ask him if it's okay to wait 5 weeks, or should I see someone else, but I called late today and expect a call on Monday. What would you all do?

Also, does anyone know a good website with some good information about high cholesterol? I can't seem to find much.

Is anyone here relatively young and have this problem? It just seems so foreign to people my age.

Finally, are there bad side effects to mixing Lipitor and birth control? The prescribing information says to "let your doctor know about birth control pills", but nothing more. I don't really want to stop taking my birth control if I get put on Liptor.

Thanks so much for your help...

I'm glad I found this board!

--Karyn

P.S. Dr. D recommended that I start aspirin therapy. Is that usually one baby aspirin a day? I was going to wait for that until I saw the internist, but it looks as though it will be a long wait.

Karynlr:

I cannot answer all your questions. Now, you've said that high cholesterol is in your family, and that your grandmother has it. Do you have a family history of heart disease?

Your cholesterol has risen considerably, possibly due to the Accutane. How long have you been off it? It's possible that your numbers may still come down. You are obviously very young, so you are most likely not in any immediate danger. If I were you, I would wait a couple of more months, then visit the Gynecologist and ask him to draw blood for a cholesterol screening. That way, you would be able to verify the results from both sources, and maybe allow a little more time for your blood lipids to stabilize before you make any hasty decisions.

I am working somewhat in the dark here since I do not know what your other numbers are, such as HDL, LDL, and triglycerides. Naturally, nobody wants to take drugs if they don't have to. But, in any case, I think that a person like yourself may in fact do well by following the Atkins diet, or some diet which closely resembles it. It has been very successful for many people. Cholesterol levels have actually dropped on this low-carb diet, and people's blood-lipid profiles have improved considerably. Yes, you would probably be consuming more fats and less carbohydrates, but quite often blood-lipids still improve. Don't ask me why, because no one has yet been able to explain it. But, for many people, it seems to have worked wonders. So, it may certainly be worth a try.
I am another young person with high cholesterol! a little older than you.. at 29, but it has definitely freaked me out to have these problems at such a young age. I also felt very alone.. I don't have any friends who are dealing with this!

I was able to lower my numbers considerably with diet & exercise, but they are back up a bit now. Medication may become necessary for me eventually, but since I want to have kids.. I can't be on it continuously.

Good luck, and hang in there! It's great that you are dealing with this now.. you are certainly doing yourself a big favor down the road!





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