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Statins Might Protect People With Narrowed Leg Arteries

Posted 7 May 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 6, 2016 – Cholesterol-lowering statins may spare people with narrowed leg arteries from the possibility of amputation and even death, a new study suggests. The higher the dose of these drugs, the lower the risk of both outcomes, the researchers found. "PAD, a narrowing of the peripheral arteries to the legs, stomach, arms and head, is the next cardiovascular epidemic," said study author Dr. Shipra Arya. She is an assistant professor in the division of vascular surgery at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. For the study, the researchers analyzed health information on more than 200,000 veterans with peripheral artery disease (PAD) from the Veterans Affairs' database. They identified those who were taking statins around the time they were diagnosed with PAD. The researchers also recorded the veterans' dosage of these drugs. During an average follow-up period of ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Raynaud's Syndrome, Hypertriglyceridemia, Peripheral Arterial Disease, Intermittent Claudication, Arterial Thrombosis

Weight Loss Surgery May Boost Good Cholesterol in Obese Boys

Posted 5 May 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 5, 2016 – Weight loss surgery could help severely obese teenage boys reduce their risk for heart disease by increasing their levels of "good" cholesterol, a preliminary study suggests. The surgery also enhances the protective effects of HDL cholesterol, the researchers said. "We already knew that weight loss surgery improves weight and cholesterol numbers. This new research shows that there are actually changes in the way HDL functions in adolescents, which may lead to a reduction in long-term cardiovascular risk," study author Dr. Amy Shah, a pediatric endocrinologist at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital, said in an American Heart Association news release. The small study involved 10 severely obese teen boys. The participants had an average age of 17 and weighed an average of 367 pounds. The researchers noted that 90 percent of the boys were white. The teens underwent a ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Hypertriglyceridemia, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Hyperlipoproteinemia

No Statins Before Heart Surgery, Study Suggests

Posted 4 May 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 4, 2016 – Taking cholesterol-lowering statins right before heart surgery, once touted as a way to prevent common postoperative complications, has no benefit and may even cause harm, a new study suggests. In that setting, Crestor (rosuvastatin) did not prevent either the abnormal heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation or heart damage, and it was linked to a slightly increased risk of kidney damage, researchers said. "There are many valid reasons why one may want to take statins, but prevention of postoperative complications in cardiac surgery is not one of them," said lead researcher Dr. Barbara Casadei. She is a professor of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Oxford in England. "Our study is consistent with the idea that well-established beneficial effects of statin therapy, such as the reduction in heart attacks and strokes, are only achieved by long-term ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Heart Disease, Atrial Fibrillation, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Renal Failure, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Chronic Kidney Disease, Hypertriglyceridemia, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Lescol, Ischemic Heart Disease

Pharmacists Can Manage Some Chronic Conditions Effectively, Study Suggests

Posted 26 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 25, 2016 – Pharmacists may do a better job than doctors helping chronically ill patients manage their blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels if they're allowed to direct people's health care, a new evidence review suggests. The review also found that pharmacists could manage chronic diseases with about the same efficiency as doctors. However, current evidence doesn't show whether pharmacists can actually improve a patient's overall health if they take over someone's care from a doctor, said study senior author Dr. Timothy Wilt. He's a professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota Medical School, and a staff physician at the Minneapolis VA Health Care System. Wilt and his colleagues also couldn't show whether having a pharmacist manage your care can help you live longer or reduce symptoms caused by chronic ailments such as heart disease or diabetes. ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, High Cholesterol, Hypertriglyceridemia, Hyperlipoproteinemia, Abnormal Glucose Tolerance, Hypertensive Heart Disease

Genetic High-Cholesterol Condition More Common Than Thought

Posted 14 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 14, 2016 – Twice as many people as previously thought are genetically predisposed to develop dangerously high cholesterol levels, new research suggests. Familial hypercholesterolemia, as this condition is called, significantly ups the risk for an early heart attack. The study found it affects about one in every 250 American men and women, rather than one in 500. The new numbers don't reflect a problem on the rise, however, said study author Dr. Sarah de Ferranti, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. Instead, the condition was previously "under-recognized," she explained. For those who have this potentially deadly condition, "it is extremely important to get early, consistent preventive care," de Ferranti said. "The key is for you and your clinician to understand and distinguish between mild to moderately high cholesterol that comes on in middle ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Zetia, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Ezetimibe, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Lescol, Hyperlipoproteinemia

MS Patients May Be Prone to Other Chronic Illnesses, Study Finds

Posted 9 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 9, 2016 – People with multiple sclerosis (MS) are more likely to have other chronic health problems than those without the nervous system disorder, a new study indicates. Researchers looked at how common several chronic conditions – high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, chronic lung disease, epilepsy, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia – were in nearly 23,400 people newly diagnosed with MS and more than 116,600 people without MS. The MS patients had higher rates of all the conditions, with high cholesterol being the exception. Their rates of mental illness, particularly depression, were also high. Nineteen percent of MS patients and 9 percent of those without MS had depression, the study found. For many of the chronic conditions, there were significant gender differences. High ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Type 2, Seizures, Hypertension, Asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Heart Disease, Epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, High Cholesterol, Heart Attack, Mania, Schizophrenia, Schizoaffective Disorder, Seizure Prevention, Angina, Diabetic Neuropathy, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Diabetic Nerve Damage, Insulin Resistance

Poor Sleep May Not Add to Cholesterol Problems, Study Finds

Posted 3 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 2, 2016 – Sleepless nights don't appear to be linked to an increase in cholesterol levels, a new study indicates. The exception seems to be people who take sleeping pills to treat insomnia, the researchers said. There has been speculation about a possible link between insomnia and heart disease risk factors such as high cholesterol, because sleep apnea – another type of sleep disorder – has been linked to heart disease. From the large U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, the researchers behind the new study reviewed data on more than 19,000 people. They looked at information from 2005 to 2008. In people over age 20, the researchers found 11 percent had elevated levels of "bad" LDL cholesterol. Twenty-two percent had low levels of "good" HDL cholesterol. Just over 16 percent had high levels of triglycerides, another unhealthy blood fat, the study ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Fatigue, High Cholesterol, Drowsiness, Sleep Apnea, Obstructive Sleep Apnea/Hypopnea Syndrome, Hypertriglyceridemia, Hypersomnia, Non-24-Hour Sleep Wake Disorder, Shift Work Sleep Disorder, Jet Lag

Health Tip: Eating Red Meat

Posted 9 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

-- Too much red meat can be bad for your heart and general health. Red meat tends to be higher in both saturated fat and cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends: In lieu of red meat, opt for skinless chicken or turkey, fish or beans. If you really love red meat, watch how much you eat. Stick to a healthy portion size, which for red meat is about the size of a deck of cards. Look for leaner cuts, possibly labeled as sirloin, round or loin. Before you cook, cut away visible fat. After cooking, pour off the fat from the pan before eating. Healthier ways of preparing meat include stewing, broiling or baking. Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Hypertriglyceridemia, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction

High-Dose Statins May Ease Macular Degeneration for Some

Posted 4 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 4, 2016 – High doses of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs – medicines such as Lipitor, Crestor and Zocor – may help people with a common eye disease called macular degeneration, a small study suggests. In the early stage clinical trial, a team from Harvard Medical School assessed the effects of statin treatment in people with the dry form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). AMD affects more than 150 million people worldwide. The dry form is much more common and accounts for about 85 percent of cases, according to the researchers. Effective treatments are available for the wet form of AMD, but not the dry form, so dry-form AMD remains the leading cause of blindness in the developed world. In AMD, fat deposits form under the retina, so that patients develop blurring or blindness in the center of their vision. In the study, 23 patients with dry-form AMD were given ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Macular Degeneration, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Lescol, Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Pitavastatin, Altoprev

'Obese' May Not Always Equal Unhealthy: Study

Posted 4 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 4, 2016 – Many overweight and obese Americans might be perfectly healthy when it comes to blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels – while many thin folks may not be the picture of good health, a new study contends. Using a government health survey, researchers found that nearly half of overweight U.S. adults were "metabolically healthy." That meant they had no more than one risk factor for type 2 diabetes and heart disease – including high blood pressure, unhealthy cholesterol or triglyceride levels, elevated blood sugar, or high concentrations of C-reactive protein (a marker of inflammation in the blood vessels). Among obese adults, 29 percent were deemed healthy – as were 16 percent of those who were severely obese based on body mass index (BMI, a ratio of weight to height). On the other hand, more than 30 percent of normal-weight Americans were ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Type 2, Obesity, Hypertension, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Hypertriglyceridemia, Hypertensive Heart Disease

Statins May Reduce Heart Risks Linked to Sleep Apnea: Study

Posted 6 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 6, 2016 – A new discovery about the way sleep apnea may raise the risk of heart disease also suggests that taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs might reduce that risk, according to a new study. Sleep apnea is a common disorder that involves irregular breathing while asleep, with oxygen intake dropping frequently for brief periods. The condition can triple a person's risk of stroke, high blood pressure and other heart problems, said study author Dr. Sanja Jelic, an associate professor of medicine at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. Statins such as Crestor (rosuvastatin) and Lipitor (atorvastatin) are already taken by millions of Americans to reduce their risk of heart disease. "If the beneficial effects of statins on blood vessel health in patients with obstructive sleep apnea is confirmed in larger clinical trials, obstructive sleep apnea may ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Sleep Apnea, Obstructive Sleep Apnea/Hypopnea Syndrome, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Lescol

U.S. Task Force Backs Statins for Those 40 to 75 at Heightened Heart Risk

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs should be used to prevent a first heart attack or stroke in certain at-risk patients, according to a draft recommendation released Monday by the nation's leading experts in preventive medicine. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said statins can provide maximum preventive benefits for adults 40 to 75 years old who have an existing risk factor for heart disease and at least a 10 percent or greater risk of a heart attack or stroke sometime within the next 10 years. The independent panel added that people with a 10-year risk of heart attack and stroke between 7.5 percent and 10 percent might also benefit from statins, and should discuss the matter with their doctor. "Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death, and people with no signs or symptoms or past history of cardiovascular disease can still be at risk," said ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Lescol, Hyperlipoproteinemia, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIb (Elevated LDL + VLDL), Lescol XL

U.S. Task Force Stays Neutral on Cholesterol Screening for Kids

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – There's not enough evidence to recommend screening all children and teens for high cholesterol, experts say. It's not clear if such screening up to age 20 reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said in a draft recommendation released Monday. This is unchanged from a 2007 recommendation. "There is currently not enough research to determine whether screening all average-risk children and adolescents without symptoms leads to better cardiovascular health in adulthood," task force vice chair Dr. David Grossman said in a news release from the task force. "In addition, the potential harms of long-term use of cholesterol-lowering medication by children and adolescents are not yet understood," Grossman added. The task force is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in prevention and evidence-based ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Lescol, Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol XL, Mevacor

One in Five U.S. Kids Over Age 5 Has Unhealthy Cholesterol: CDC

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – Twenty-one percent of American children and teens have some form of "abnormal" blood cholesterol reading that leaves them at heightened risk for heart disease and stroke as they reach adulthood. That's the conclusion of a review of 2011-2014 federal health data compiled by researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overall, slightly more than 13 percent of kids had unhealthily low levels of HDL ("good") cholesterol – the kind that actually might help clear out arteries. The CDC says just over 8 percent had too-high levels of other forms of cholesterol that are bad for arteries, and more than 7 percent had unhealthily high levels of "total" cholesterol. Obesity helped drive these trends, the CDC said. For example, more than 43 percent of children who were obese had some form of abnormal cholesterol reading, compared to less than 14 ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Thromboembolic Stroke Prophylaxis

Screen All Kids for Cholesterol, Depression and HIV, Pediatricians' Group Says

Posted 7 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 7, 2015 – All kids should be screened for high cholesterol, depression and HIV, with some tests starting as early as age 9, a leading group of U.S. pediatricians recommends. The guidelines, from the American Academy of Pediatrics, are among some key steps the academy has recently taken to advise pediatricians on child health screenings. A summary of the recommendations is published Dec. 7 in the journal Pediatrics. A recurring theme is that screenings are recommended for all children in certain age groups – and not only for those who might be at increased risk. For example, all kids should be screened for high cholesterol between the ages of 9 and 11. At one time, screening was done only when children were considered to be high-risk, based on factors like family history, said Dr. Geoffrey Simon, who chairs the academy's Committee on Practice and Ambulatory Medicine. But ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, High Cholesterol, HIV Infection, Dysthymia, Hypertriglyceridemia, Diagnosis and Investigation

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