November 29, 2018 – Cholesterol Guidelines

November 21, 2018

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Anchor lead: New guidelines for managing high cholesterol have been released, Elizabeth Tracey reports

How might the new cholesterol guidelines released at the recent American Heart Association meeting affect you? Roger Blumenthal, one of the authors of the guidelines and a professor of cardiology at Johns Hopkins, explains.

Blumenthal: Lifestyle improvements is key. It’s always better to prevent the development of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes. The second category is primary prevention. We now have better tools to estimate what a person’s true risk is of a heart attack or stroke, and then finally the third category is those people who’ve already had a cardiac event. We now have a clear recognition that lower is better when it comes to the bad LDL cholesterol, with proven therapies. :27

Blumenthal says assessing risk can be accomplished using a standardized risk assessment tool that takes into account things like age, smoking status and sex, and that if ambiguity remains a coronary calcium scan, which looks for the presence of calcium in the heart’s arteries, can help make the call. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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