Brett Heilbron, MD, FRCPC, cardiologist, discusses lowering your cholesterol.
Loading the player...How Do You Lower Cholesterol? Brett Heilbron, MD, FRCPC, cardiologist, discusses lowering your cholesterol.
Featuring Dr. Brett Heilbron, MD, FRCPC
Duration: 1 minute, 34 seconds
Cholesterol is an important constituent of the body, and is necessary for the functioning of all the cells in the body.
But excessively high levels can actually result in deposition of fatty deposits in the arteries that can lead to subsequent events such as angina, heart attack and stroke.
There are two main types of cholesterol. There's a bad cholesterol, or LDL, and a good cholesterol, or HDL, which is actually protective. And it's actually the bad cholesterol that results in the fatty deposits in the arteries.
In terms of reducing risk, in individuals who have atherosclerosis or have had a cardiovascular event, there's just overwhelming data that reducing the LDL cholesterol has a huge impact on subsequent cardiovascular events.
Most times medical therapy is advised, certainly just diet and exercise help, but most individuals with vascular disease will require some medication such as a statin. These meds have been shown to reduce the risk by about 30 percent over the next five years in terms of heart attack, stroke or death.
Current guidelines suggest that individuals in their early adult years should be screened for their cholesterol levels, with subsequent follow up depending on their level and their cardiovascular risk.
For high risk individuals, they may need to be tested once a year thereafter but for most individuals it's important to maintain that relationship with their doctor so an awareness can be ascertained and an appropriate follow up can be set in place.
Presenter: Dr. Brett Heilbron