Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Expert Forum
VERY NERVOUS about carotid doppler result--
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Questions in the Cardiovascular Disease Prevention forum are answered by Dr. Lee Kirksey, associate professor at The University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

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VERY NERVOUS about carotid doppler result--

I am a 45 year old white male about 40 pounds overweight.  Family history is significant for hypertension, diabetes, but no significant coronary history per say.  My parents are both still living.  I see a cardiologist annually as I have a history of benign PVCs .  My cholesterol has been in the 220 range with a HDL of 30 and LDL of157.  I enjoy walking/jogging 3-4 times per week with no symptoms.

My stress tests and carotid doppler screenings have always been normal in the past.  Yesterday however,on carotid doppler my doctor said there was a 5% occlusion on one side and "thickening" on the other.  We immediatley started 10mg Crestor, low dose ASA, and 2000mg fish oil.

My question is, am I in immediate danger?  Should I get imaging of heart, aka 64 slice?  I have two young children and want to be there for them!!  Is this low amount of plaque reversible??  I am now comitted to making changes in my lifestyle but hope I am "in time."  I guess I am asking if 5% blockage means I could have coronary heart disease...I am hoping I am "in time."
Thank you for all your help!!
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Hello
Congratulations on committing to improve your lifestyle. The presence of atheroclerotic plaque is an indicator of cholesterol deposition. Atherosclerosis is a systemic process and it is likely that you have cholesterol deposits elsewhere in your body. Mild plaques like this in the carotid do not generally cause a stroke however this is a good indicator that you need to modify your intake. there is evidence that plaque can regress and remodel with extreme lo fat diets like tot fat <30gm and sat fat<12-15gm

Good luck with your efforts.
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