Am I a statins candidate?

Discussion in 'Health and medical' started by Lee M., Dec 3, 2003.

  1. Lee M.

    Lee M. Guest

    I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#, BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin and
    an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and lift
    weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my primary
    risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65, father
    had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were overweight
    and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which says I
    have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my cholesterol
    level below 200.

    My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined because
    I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my bad
    genes. Any opinions?
     
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  2. "Lee M." wrote:

    > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#,


    That would be 10 lbs over "ideal." You might be overweight.

    > BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin and
    > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and lift
    > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my primary
    > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65, father
    > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were overweight
    > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which says I
    > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my cholesterol
    > level below 200.


    Good.

    >
    >
    > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined because
    > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my bad
    > genes. Any opinions?


    What is your LDL cholesterol?

    If it is over 100 mg/dl, you should consider statins to get below this goal
    since you and your doctor believe you do have coronary disease.

    Humbly,

    Andrew

    --
    Dr. Andrew B. Chung, MD/PhD
    Board-Certified Cardiologist
    http://www.heartmdphd.com
     
  3. On Thu, 04 Dec 2003 00:05:16 GMT, Lee M. <[email protected]_it.com> wrote:

    > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#, BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin
    > and
    > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and
    > lift
    > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my primary
    > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65, father
    > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were
    > overweight
    > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which says
    > I
    > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my
    > cholesterol
    > level below 200.
    >
    > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined
    > because
    > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my bad
    > genes. Any opinions?
    >
    >

    I am assuming your heart scan was with EBCT, or electron beam computed
    tomography, and that it was read by a radiologist whom you may have never
    met, and the report sent to you to share with your doctor. Perhaps you are
    not having any symptoms of atherosclerosis and were just curious about your
    own heart and decided to undergo a heart scan, or perhaps your doctor
    recommended you undergo the evaluation.

    Regardless, it is for many to instinctively turn to statins when faced with
    a scenario such as yours without considering the annual cost and the risk
    of taking the medication and the multitude of other options.

    If we assume that the coronary calcium score is accurate (although many
    studies dispute its accuracy and usefulness, as does the American Heart
    Association), then you must also recognize that it is a snapshot of your
    atherosclerosis burden, and unfortunately cannot be used as a tool to asses
    effectiveness of your treatment to any degree of reliability.

    Without gene therapy, we are faced with choosing ways to control
    atherosclerosis and not cure it. Controlling atherosclerosis properly is
    not an easy thing to do and must be individualized for each and every
    person. Reaching treatment goals of cholesterol, blood pressure, exercise,
    weight, and the over 300 other known risk factors for the disease is
    difficult for most people. It is expensive, time consuming and fraught with
    risk. How much is right for you? Treatment guidlines are set for
    populations, or millions of people. However, we are not discussing millions
    of people, we are discussing you, your disease and your treatment.

    --
    ~~~
    Patrick Blanchard, M.D., A.B.F.P.
    Board Certified in Family Practice
    http://www.familydoctor.org/blanchard
    ~~~
    SonoScore
    Winning against heart attack and stroke
    http://www.sonoscore.com
     
  4. Hi Lee, you and I are about in the same boat. Without statins my chol
    is 200 and HDL 69. I stopped taking statins (10 mg Lipitor) because I
    read it prevent muscle recovery, and I lift weights and do aerobic
    exercise as well. 3 things suggest you don't need statins: 1) your
    ratio of total chol to HDL isn't so bad 2) the older you are the less
    the benefit of chol lowering. 3) your supreb BP. To be safe get a
    test for CRP. If CRP is high, statins may reduce it. Also, check out
    your recovery pulse rate. Finally, add these two things 1) eat oily
    fish (eg salmon) at least 2x a week. 2) unless contra-indicted have
    one or two drinks daily. There is more evidence of the benefits of
    moderate drinking than there is for statins - see
    http://www.acsh.org/publications/priorities/0801/pcyes.html


    "Lee M." <[email protected]_it.com> wrote in message news:<%[email protected]_s52>...
    > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#, BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin and
    > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and lift
    > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my primary
    > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65, father
    > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were overweight
    > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which says I
    > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my cholesterol
    > level below 200.
    >
    > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined because
    > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my bad
    > genes. Any opinions?
     
  5. Lee M.

    Lee M. Guest

    Hi Brad,

    I like your advice. We do in fact have fish, usually salmon, at least once
    a week and rarely eat beef except in the summer. I probably average 5
    drinks/week but I could probably force myself up to once a day in the
    interests of health.<g>.

    "Brad Sheppard" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Hi Lee, you and I are about in the same boat. Without statins my chol
    > is 200 and HDL 69. I stopped taking statins (10 mg Lipitor) because I
    > read it prevent muscle recovery, and I lift weights and do aerobic
    > exercise as well. 3 things suggest you don't need statins: 1) your
    > ratio of total chol to HDL isn't so bad 2) the older you are the less
    > the benefit of chol lowering. 3) your supreb BP. To be safe get a
    > test for CRP. If CRP is high, statins may reduce it. Also, check out
    > your recovery pulse rate. Finally, add these two things 1) eat oily
    > fish (eg salmon) at least 2x a week. 2) unless contra-indicted have
    > one or two drinks daily. There is more evidence of the benefits of
    > moderate drinking than there is for statins - see
    > http://www.acsh.org/publications/priorities/0801/pcyes.html
    >
    >
    > "Lee M." <[email protected]_it.com> wrote in message

    news:<%[email protected]_s52>...
    > > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#, BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin

    and
    > > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and

    lift
    > > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my

    primary
    > > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65,

    father
    > > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were

    overweight
    > > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which

    says I
    > > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my

    cholesterol
    > > level below 200.
    > >
    > > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined

    because
    > > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my

    bad
    > > genes. Any opinions?
     
  6. Lee M.

    Lee M. Guest

    My LDL has ranged between 130 and 140 on my last 3 tests. Last time my
    body fat was measured it was 9% so I don't think I'm overweight. Thanks for
    the response.

    "Dr. Andrew B. Chung, MD/PhD" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > "Lee M." wrote:
    >
    > > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#,

    >
    > That would be 10 lbs over "ideal." You might be overweight.
    >
    > > BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin

    and
    > > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and

    lift
    > > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my

    primary
    > > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65,

    father
    > > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were

    overweight
    > > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which

    says I
    > > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my

    cholesterol
    > > level below 200.

    >
    > Good.
    >
    > >
    > >
    > > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined

    because
    > > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my

    bad
    > > genes. Any opinions?

    >
    > What is your LDL cholesterol?
    >
    > If it is over 100 mg/dl, you should consider statins to get below this

    goal
    > since you and your doctor believe you do have coronary disease.
    >
    > Humbly,
    >
    > Andrew
    >
    > --
    > Dr. Andrew B. Chung, MD/PhD
    > Board-Certified Cardiologist
    > http://www.heartmdphd.com
    >
    >
     
  7. Lee,

    My favorite drink now is a pint of Guinness - dark beers have lots of
    anti-oxidants which may also prevent heart disease. Of course, I drink
    purely for medicinal purposes <grin>.

    "Lee M." <[email protected]_it.com> wrote in message news:<[email protected]_s54>...
    > Hi Brad,
    >
    > I like your advice. We do in fact have fish, usually salmon, at least once
    > a week and rarely eat beef except in the summer. I probably average 5
    > drinks/week but I could probably force myself up to once a day in the
    > interests of health.<g>.
    >
    > "Brad Sheppard" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]
    > > Hi Lee, you and I are about in the same boat. Without statins my chol
    > > is 200 and HDL 69. I stopped taking statins (10 mg Lipitor) because I
    > > read it prevent muscle recovery, and I lift weights and do aerobic
    > > exercise as well. 3 things suggest you don't need statins: 1) your
    > > ratio of total chol to HDL isn't so bad 2) the older you are the less
    > > the benefit of chol lowering. 3) your supreb BP. To be safe get a
    > > test for CRP. If CRP is high, statins may reduce it. Also, check out
    > > your recovery pulse rate. Finally, add these two things 1) eat oily
    > > fish (eg salmon) at least 2x a week. 2) unless contra-indicted have
    > > one or two drinks daily. There is more evidence of the benefits of
    > > moderate drinking than there is for statins - see
    > > http://www.acsh.org/publications/priorities/0801/pcyes.html
    > >
    > >
    > > "Lee M." <[email protected]_it.com> wrote in message

    > news:<%[email protected]_s52>...
    > > > I am a 55 year old male, 5'5" & 135#, BP typically 110/70, cholesterol
    > > > around 220 with HDL above 60. I eat a healthy diet, take a multivitamin

    > and
    > > > an 81 mg aspirin daily and run 4 days/week (about 10 miles total) and

    > lift
    > > > weights the other 3. In addition to the elevated cholesterol, my

    > primary
    > > > risk factor is heredity; grandfather had fatal heart attack at 65,

    > father
    > > > had non-fatal heart attack at 58 (still alive at 78). Both were

    > overweight
    > > > and relatively inactive. Last year my heart scan score was 34 which

    > says I
    > > > have some coronary artery disease. I have been able to get my

    > cholesterol
    > > > level below 200.
    > > >
    > > > My GP has asked me if I want to try statins. So far I have declined

    > because
    > > > I don't like the thought of taking a drug for potentially the rest of my
    > > > life. I just wonder if my healthy lifestyle is enough to overcome my

    > bad
    > > > genes. Any opinions?
     
  8. "Lee M." wrote:

    > My LDL has ranged between 130 and 140 on my last 3 tests.


    Too high for someone with known coronary atherosclerosis.

    > Last time my
    > body fat was measured it was 9%


    Too high for someone with known coronary atherosclerosis *and* LDL greater than
    100 mg/dl.

    > so I don't think I'm overweight.


    I suspect you are and would suggest you ask your doctor about supervising you
    for:

    http://www.heartmdphd.com/wtloss.asp

    > Thanks for
    > the response.
    >


    You are welcome.

    Humbly,

    Andrew

    --
    Dr. Andrew B. Chung, MD/PhD
    Board-Certified Cardiologist
    http://www.heartmdphd.com/
     
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