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21064 tn?1309308733

Poll: Do you know your cholesterol.....and.are you taking a statin?

Do you know your cholesterol numbers?  Are you taking a statin medication?  If so, have your cholesterol levels improved?
25 Responses
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390388 tn?1279636213
Hi there.  Yes I do know and No I won't tell you!    LOL.  Just kidding.  

My total cholesterol is now a winning 203, HDL is 56 and LDL is 127.  Since I started on Lipitor it has dropped a total of 36 points.  

I was put on it not so much for my levels of cholesterol; but for, high hsCRP results and xanthelasma (yellowish orange flat patches around the eyes).  My hsCRP level is down to 6.2 and the cholesterol deposits around my eyes don't seem to be getting an worse.

All in all I would say that's a plus.  Take care.  
Helpful - 0
21064 tn?1309308733
Thanks for sharing the good news!!  

I am not currently on cholesterol meds, but a lot of people around me on are different regimes. For the most part, they are experiencing positive results.  However, a couple of people have had to change medications because of leg cramps.  I've been hearing that's pretty common.....
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390388 tn?1279636213
C Hi.  I had really really bad leg cramps for the first two weeks.  After that it was fine.  I would not want to have to go threw that twice.  Changing or starting new pills for me has always been tough. { :- (

Now I think it was worth the 2 weeks of pain though with levels looking up.  : - )
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Avatar universal
My total cholesterol is 110, LDL 52, HDL 50, Trig 39. I take 40 mg Lipitor one night and 20 mgs the next night. I also take 2000 mg of Niapsan every night

When I was admitted with a heart attack 12/06, my Total was 198, LDL 138, HDL 35 and trig 123.
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21064 tn?1309308733
WOW!  Great improvement MysteryChemist!!  It really seems that the Niapsan helps!

Have you ever had a full lipid profile done?  I'm asking because I know someone with a TC of 14?, LDL 120ish, HDL, 42ish (Sorry, I can't remember the exact numbers).  Anyway, here's what's weird!  She had this full panel done and even though the numbers are OK, the LDL showed a bad kind of cholesterol.....so confusing!  So, it seems that even though my current levels are OK (in my case TC 148, HDL, 43, LDL, 105, trig 74), it seems that I can still have a tendency for CAD depending on the actual makeup of the LDL...........sigh
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Avatar universal
No, I have not had a full lipid profile. It is possible to be at risk even though your LDL is low. LDL is a term that covers many different sizes of LDL.  Some of the smaller sizes of LDL can cause more damage than the larger sizes of LDL. It's possible to have LDL that is mostly the smaller size material so you would be at higher risk than another person who had the same LDL number but his/her was composed of larger LDL molecules.

Statins lower LDL but it lowers all kinds of LDL.  Niacin can help change the smaller size LDL to the larger size LDL.

Here is a link that gives more details

http://www.heartpoint.com/cholesadvanced.html
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21064 tn?1309308733
Thanks!!  I will be sure to pass along the information!  Always learning something around here....LOL

Thanks for the link.  I'm looking forward to checking it out!  Is niacin something you can take on your own?  Or, do you need an RX?  
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251395 tn?1434494286
Hello-

I just had my annual physical and was disheartened to hear the results of my lipid panel. Total cholesterol is 240, triglycerides 67, HDL 54, LDL 172.

I eat very healthy, low fat, heart healthy food. Both my parents and 3 of my sibs have high cholesterol so  my PCP started me on 20mg of Simvastatin. I will have my levels checked again in 6 weeks. Will let you know if there is any change.
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21064 tn?1309308733
Thanks for sharing Brooke_38!  

It's interesting to see the wide variations in the numbers as well as the treatment options....
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Avatar universal
I am 25 and on liptor 20mg. My total was 240 before meds and now my total is at 180-190. It only brought my tris down from 600 to between 350 - 400 so i am working on that now. No side effects.
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390388 tn?1279636213
Hi well I was thinking mine was really good!  After going to the http link now I'm not sure.  :-O    Total is 203 Trig. 100   HDL 56   LDL 127 and  Lipoprotein A 31.  ???  

Well maybe it will go down some more
in time at least it's going down..........{ : - )
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21064 tn?1309308733
Great results!!!  
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63984 tn?1385437939
About 15 years ago I was told my total cholesterol was over 300, I can't recall the beakdowns.  I tried to get them down by diet alone, so went to hospital dietary lectures, quit eating fast food, did all the things that will reduce the cholesterol number.  I got it down to about 220, and thought that was enough, even though my doctor wanted the level lower.  I was listening to family members who distained prescription meds and refused to take a statin, wanting to go the 'natural' route.  Huge mistake, had three MI's, I've got eight stents to back up my statement.  My total cholesterol is now 137 with high hdl's, low ldl's and tri's, but it's like closing the gate after the cows got out.  I now believe that one must watch the diet very closely as well as take statins if the cholesterol is high.  It is my belief that very, very strict dietary control can reduce one's cholesterol about 30%, but not much more than that, and research I've read backs up that.  

I had another stress test Monday and I clearly have more blockages and a weakened heart, I'll have an angiogram to assess more clearly what is going on.  If I could change one thing in my life, I would have mixed in a statin when I changed my dietary habits.  I think anyone who has high cholesterol and refuses to take statins should walk in my shoes a day, I'll bet they would reconsider and take a more balanced stance.
Helpful - 0
21064 tn?1309308733
What a great post for those members who are facing the decision you faced years ago....

You did what you thought was in your best interest, and it really is hard to say if things would have been different had you subscribed to taking the statin.  One thing that comes to mind - IF you had taken the statin when it was suggested, you may have become complacent with the dietary changes.  I've noticed that we can get fooled into a false sense of security when our cholesterol numbers look good.  This way, though it may not have been right, you absolutely know how to manage your diet and your healthy lifestyle changes may be what's helping the statins to work better for you.  It's just so hard to say.

I hope the angiogram reveals the blockages are small, and you're doing well.

Incidentally, I've heard the change in cholesterol levels from diet alone averages around 10%.  It helps, but I agree it's important to recognize when diet alone is not enough.  Thanks for helping us to understand the importance of vigilent monitoring and management.

Connie
P.S. How was your fishing trip?  Those fish had better watch out!
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63984 tn?1385437939
I've seen the studies that show the averages, but being somewhat of a compulsive personality, I embraced a very strict diet and my experience was a 30% drop in total cholesterol.  It's very difficult to maintain that lifestyle, however, and quite expensive.  I believe I made a huge mistake by not taking the statins, believing in only natural cures.  A balanced approach  to heart disease makes so much sense in retrospect.

Thanks for asking about the fishing  in Mexico.  We had a wonderful trip with the children and grandchildren, and even after almost ten days together we were all speaking at the end of the journey.  Our fishing trip was interesting, we caught tuna and spanish mackeral, and it was billfish 3 , fisherfolk 0.  We would have released the billfish anyway but it was really a thrill to have them on the line.  The beauty of the bay around Puerto Villarta was stunning.  
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390388 tn?1279636213
First of all I also tried to control mine naturally along with my high BP for a couple of years.  Some people just cannot for one reason or another.  I did not have all of the end problems that you did though.  I'm so sorry you went threw everything that you did.  What a post though for others to read though.  WOW.  

The other thing I wanted to say was it sounded like you had a great fishing trip in Mexico.  That is so cool!  I never caught anything over 28 #'s.  And lastly I hope your test results turn out good and better than expected.  I have read a lot of your post in the past and you tell it how it is.  I hope a lot of people read this and learn from it. Take care and thank you for your post.  : -)
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Avatar universal
Total Cholesterol @ 115, HDL @ 39, LDL @ 66, Tri's @ 77.  I began the struggle 5 years ago with an MI and CABGx5.  I don't know what the numbers were then but have been on Lipitor and Zetia ever since and have had good numbers except for the HDL.  Still working on that.  Currently going through Cardiac Rehab again after several caths showed alot of new blockages that can't be stented or bypassed.  
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21064 tn?1309308733
I'm so glad the fishing trip was so much fun....and that you're all still speaking to one another!!  LOL!! I have never fished, but I know enough to know those are some BIG fish!!!

It's so important for those of us just embarking on the statin decision to read stories like yours.  I am truly grateful for your perspective AND your terrific outlook on life!!  I also feel it's all about balance -

Hope you're enjoying your summer!
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21064 tn?1309308733
Good news on the cholesterol battle!  Your panel looks great!   I'm also trying to find ways to raise my HDL.  Have you found anything in particular that works well?  

Sorry about the new blockages.  Hopefully, your collateral vessels have enlarged to removed some of the load from the blocked arteries.

If you don't mind sharing, how old were you when you had the MI and CABG?  My Dad has CABG at 64, but my father-in-law didn't have CABG until 80!!  

Any side effects from the Zetia?  
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Avatar universal
Sorry for not responding sooner, but Niaspan is a prescription form of Niacin. It's a extended release version of niacin. It's chief claim to flame is the people have less flushing with it.  Niacin is available over the counter and you take it 3 times a day, I believe.  No  matter which Niacin route you choose , it's very important to get your Dr's advice as they should check your liver enzymes and your cholesterol levels.
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21064 tn?1309308733
Thanks for the information!  Nice to have that information in my back pocket!
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Avatar universal
I was 49 when I had my second heart attack and the 5 bypasses.  I don't have any noticable problems taking Zetia but I am only on 10mg of that and 40 of Lipitor.  I take lots of other meds that cause some problems like dizziness and fatigue.

I know that walking on a treadmill at a pretty brisk pace helps raise the HDL for me as it has in the past.

I was told that part of my problem is I have unusually small corollaries and as a result they get plugged up easier.  Fortunately the arterial graft that was done 5 years ago is still open.  The others were vein grafts and those didn't work out so good.
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21064 tn?1309308733
49 is so young by CABG!!  Although I know it's hard to say for sure, do you attribute most of it to genetics?  or a combination of things?

Good to know about the brisk walking!  I just got into a good walking routine so maybe my HDL will inch up some.

I'm glad to see the arterial graft is still open, that's good news.  Hopefully, the vein grafts will hold their own and the medications will help with the risk factors.

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Avatar universal
Mine is 97.  Its always been good without meds.  One of the reasons my doctors tend to overlook my other cardiac issues.
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