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  • Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

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    Old 02-21-2014, 12:45 PM   #1
    RandomUserAZ
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    Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

    In 2007, I was overweight with high cholesterol numbers (topped out at around 250 with 169 LDL). I had 'the talk' with my doctor and started exercising and eating healthier and, by 2012, had lost 40 pounds and my cholesterol numbers dropped down to 160 with 93 LDL).

    After a coronary calcium scan showed incipient heart disease, he suggested I go on statins as a preventative measure. He wanted me to get my LDL under 70. I was hesitant, but agreed.

    Two months after starting on lovastatin, my cholesterol had plummeted to 118 with 66 LDL. However, over the past year, it has risen significantly and is now back where it started at 155. My weight/diet/exercise level has not changed much in this time period at all. If it matters, my triglycerides haven't changed much either (55-60 range).

    I'm not sure what to make of this. I find myself with the same cholesterol numbers that I have before I started on the drug. In my uneducated view, my cholesterol numbers were driven too low by the lovastatin and my body started making more to make up for the deficit and that I'd have been better off never starting it at all. If that is true, though, if I stop taking it, will my cholesterol skyrocket until it finds a balance point again?

    Is there another reason why my cholesterol would drop that quickly and then rebound back to its original levels such a short time span?

    Here are the numbers for the last 4 tests. The first test was before going on statins. The second was 2 months after starting on statins. The last two were subsequent 6 months checkups.

    Cholesterol 156 - 118 - 136 - 155
    LDL 93 - 66 - 73 - 89
    HDL 50 - 41 - 51 - 55
    Triglycerides 64 - 57 - 60 - 53

    I'm a 48-year-old male. 6' - 180lb, in above-average shape.

     
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    Old 02-27-2014, 10:03 AM   #2
    HouTex1962
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    Re: Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RandomUserAZ View Post
    In 2007, I was overweight with high cholesterol numbers (topped out at around 250 with 169 LDL). I had 'the talk' with my doctor and started exercising and eating healthier and, by 2012, had lost 40 pounds and my cholesterol numbers dropped down to 160 with 93 LDL).

    After a coronary calcium scan showed incipient heart disease, he suggested I go on statins as a preventative measure. He wanted me to get my LDL under 70. I was hesitant, but agreed.

    Two months after starting on lovastatin, my cholesterol had plummeted to 118 with 66 LDL. However, over the past year, it has risen significantly and is now back where it started at 155. My weight/diet/exercise level has not changed much in this time period at all. If it matters, my triglycerides haven't changed much either (55-60 range).

    I'm not sure what to make of this. I find myself with the same cholesterol numbers that I have before I started on the drug. In my uneducated view, my cholesterol numbers were driven too low by the lovastatin and my body started making more to make up for the deficit and that I'd have been better off never starting it at all. If that is true, though, if I stop taking it, will my cholesterol skyrocket until it finds a balance point again?

    Is there another reason why my cholesterol would drop that quickly and then rebound back to its original levels such a short time span?

    Here are the numbers for the last 4 tests. The first test was before going on statins. The second was 2 months after starting on statins. The last two were subsequent 6 months checkups.

    Cholesterol 156 - 118 - 136 - 155
    LDL 93 - 66 - 73 - 89
    HDL 50 - 41 - 51 - 55
    Triglycerides 64 - 57 - 60 - 53

    I'm a 48-year-old male. 6' - 180lb, in above-average shape.
    I'm missing something. The first test above (156 for TC, 93 for LDL, 50 for HDL, and 64 for Trig) are all within the guidelines I've been given by my Dr. (TC 125-200; HDL >=40; Trig <150; LDL <130). If I had those numbers I wouldn't take statins.

     
    Old 02-27-2014, 01:21 PM   #3
    RandomUserAZ
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    Re: Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

    I agree that, by the numbers, I didn't need to start on statins.

    His argument was that the calcium scan had shown that I had incipient heart disease (no major blockages, but buildups in several arteries) and that I should be more proactive in trying to limit that buildup and possibility reduce it by getting and keeping my LDL under 70.

     
    Old 02-28-2014, 04:11 AM   #4
    tess201
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    Re: Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RandomUserAZ View Post
    I agree that, by the numbers, I didn't need to start on statins.

    His argument was that the calcium scan had shown that I had incipient heart disease (no major blockages, but buildups in several arteries) and that I should be more proactive in trying to limit that buildup and possibility reduce it by getting and keeping my LDL under 70.
    If interested, you could also try alternative measures for lowering LDL - low carb diet, Red Yeast Rice, COQ10 - Kaneka ubiquinol.

    Tess

     
    Old 03-01-2014, 11:53 AM   #5
    Voxx976
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    Re: Cholesterol 'bounce-back' after being on statins for 1.5 years

    Random,
    1. Periodic blood lipid tests are subject to a natural variability. Labs have also been known to make mistakes. Perhaps a retest is in order?

    2. Lovastatin is a very weak statin and it would not surprise me if the LOWEST number isn't the fluke.

    3. Perhaps a stronger statin would give you what you need, something like atorvastatin (formerly Lipitor.)

    Know well that these "calcium scores" are very iffy and should not be used to diagnose vascular disease or the lack of it. Consider instead, a nuclear stress test, sometimes called a sestamibi scan. That is a far more accurate way to diagnose any partial blockages that are contributing to an insufficiency of blood to any part of the heart.

     
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