MLENG1198.000-Fred Hoiberg


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Heart Valve Replacement and Cholesterol

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  • Heart Valve Replacement and Cholesterol

    Hi Friends

    Recently I had a full blood cholesterol test (following fasting for 14hrs). I received a letter saying I need to make an appointment to see my doctor.

    When I called today to make the appointment the receptionist gave me the results over the phone:

    Cholesterol: 8.3
    Triglycerides: 3.32
    LDL: 5.5
    HDL: 1.32

    Someone told me to divide the total cholesterol by the HDL. Apparently the aim is to get the figure below 5.0

    Mine is: 8.3 divided by 1.32 = 6.29

    The annoying thing is I watch my diet very careful. I am on a low fat diet. At weekends I have the odd indian or chinese meal and sometimes a McDonalds. But I'm pretty health conscious.

    I'm a bit worried, because apart from my valve replacement I've had two aortic aneurysms. They remarked that the connective tissue in the aorta was weakened and I should watch blood pressure and cholesterol. Also my congenital heart condition puts me at higher risk of coronary artery disease apparently.

    Any words of wisdom appreciated.


    Jonathan, West Sussex, UK
    Complex congenital heart disease
    2 Coarctation repairs ate age 17
    Aortic Valve & Root replacement (CarboMedics CarboSeal 27mm) Oct. 1998
    Resection Descending Aortic Aneurysm, Feb. 99

  • #2
    Are you in any way, predisposed to high cholesterol, say maybe genetically? I, like you, do everything trying to lower mine and it keeps elevating anyhow. They told me that mine is most likely hereditary in nature. If this is indeed the case, your doctor is going to have to intervene and prescribe something to treat it.


    • #3
      Hi Braveheart!
      My husband had a clogged carotid artery at the age of 54. The vascular surgeon was very surprised at this because of his age. She ordered a Lipo Protein Little A blood test. That determines if he one of those people that just produce too much cholesterol. This test is not usually run with a regular cholesterol screening. You might ask about it.


      • #4
        Hi Jonathan

        My cholesterol increased only after starting Inderal. "Beta Blocker". As the heart rate slows, so does the metabolism. Exercise is the key.

        Like you, watch my diet the best I can. Red meat only once or twice a month at best.
        All the best,
        LuvMyBirman :)
        MVR, 3/99


        • #5
          Mine is genetic - I take Lipitor and it works for me. Yoour dr will step in probably with a rx. Hard to control if it's inherited situation. God bless
          My philosophy:
          No matter where you are, who you are with, what you are doing, enjoy every moment, every day. Blessins.........


          • #6
            This is my 2 cents. you are a young guy, so don't worry about it. That is what my cardio told me. Do you have a history of coronary artery disease? Did the cardio ever tell you to be worried about high cholesterol?I used to see this other cardiologist when I was in 19-20. He went all wacky because I had a cholesterol level on the "high end" of normal. Well, no other docs were upset about it. I think I was 20 at the time. My cardiologist now says that I have no danger of CAD and he has never said anything to me about high cholesterol.
            I am like you and eat pretty healthy, with the odd Indian or chinese.
            I'd get a second opinion. Sometimes those letters are just sent out as routine without thought to who the patient is, if you know what I mean. Such as, the policy maybe to send a letter to all patients with cholesterol over 5.0. You might really have nothing to worry about.

            hope it all works out


            • #7
              Statins Prescribed

              Thanks friends for your replies. You were all very helpful and kind and I appreciate that.

              Today my doctor saw me and said that my high cholesterol must be hereditary as my father and brother have it too. He explained that I should be concerned because the reading was very high and with all my heart problems they don't want me having coronary problems on top of the others. As low-fat diet alone has made no difference, he has started me on a 'statin' drug which hopefully will hammer the high cholesteol into the ground. I've been prescribed 'Atorvastatin' (Lipitor), which is compatible with Coumadin/Warfarin. I've just taken my first tablet. He's started me on 10mg and will do a repeat blood cholesterol and liver function test in 6 weeks. If it has not come down they will increase the dose to 20mg daily and repeat the blood test after another 6 weeks. I've been told to continue on a low-fat diet aswell as taking the tablet. What a bummer huh!! He said I can have the occasional McDonalds or KFC

              Thanks again everyone.

              God bless,



              • #8
                Good luck Jonathan-

                It's important to keep it under control. Your doctor is really staying on top of things, that's terrific. You sound like you're feeling quite well and that's wonderful.

                Take care,


                • #9
                  Please let us know how the Lipitor works for you. No more Lion Bars or Maltesers for you! And no more fish suppers! Arghh the tragedy of it all.

                  Hope your numbers drop rapidly.

                  Good Luck!


                  • #10
                    Jonathan - I take Lipitor 1 at night and it does the trick. I watch cholesterol filled foods and unsaturated fats. I read labels. With time, you will know what you should and should not eat. You must have a bit of cholesterol in your diet, tho, but VERY little. Your lab tests will give you the numbers, but you must keep having them every six months, once you are stabilized with a lower reading. Wish you the best. God bless
                    My philosophy:
                    No matter where you are, who you are with, what you are doing, enjoy every moment, every day. Blessins.........