I am recently post menopausal. My Cholesterol is 275 , rose up 25 points since last year,. Other numbers about the same although HDL went up 10 poiints since last year. So now- LDL 150, TG 89, HDL107, ratio 2.57. I am not overweight and watch my diet.
I exercise 4 days a week. My primary care MD said I am not ready for a statin. I went for a cardiology consult and he saw minimal plaque on my right carotid artery. How do I know it has not been there forever and has not changed?
I was put on lipitor 10mg and started to get headaches. I have been cutting the pill in half now so taking 5mg daily.
Still getting headaches but better. Have only been on it a few days.
I guess my question is, is it possible to stay off statins and just monitor the carotid artery for more plaque accumulation.
Thanks for the question, this is an important one and comes up a lot. Your cholesterol is high, as is your LDL. But an LDL of 150 is not terrible in someone with no risk factors for coronary artery disease. Your HDL (good cholesterol) is very high which is good. Don't worry about the carotid plaque, it sounds less than concerning. If you already exercise rigorously and have a good diet, a low dose statin might not be a horrible idea to get your LDL lower. In general, the lower the LDL the better (to a point), but we don't aggressively push meds on patients unless they have coronary artery disease or significant risk factors such as diabetes and hypertension. If the statin you are taking is not sitting well with you, try switching to a different brand. The side effect profile is often different. Best of luck to you!
I think you made the right decision starting on the statin. 275 is too high irregardless of the HDL, LDL, ratio, etc. A study was done on 2 groups of patients one with high HDL, the other low HDL and they had the same degree of coronary disease. The current metric seems to be getting the total <150 and the LDL < 80-100. Don't worry about the HDL, just focus on the total and LDL. Yuo might also consider a plant based diet as it has been proven very effective at lowering cholesterol. I've been on this for one year and saw remarkeable changes in my BP.
Thank you both very much for your replies. I will talk to my caridologist about switching the statin. I was curious if you could reply regarding your experiences with Crestor. I have heard good things regarding this medication. I am guessing they work differently in your body.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. MedHelp is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.