How Significant Is The Role Of Cholesterol In Heart Disease And Stroke?

Question: How significant is the role of cholesterol in heart disease and stroke?

Answer: Well, the question about how much is related to cholesterol is a difficult question to answer because if you don't have any cholesterol -- and there actually are a few people that are born with defects where their cholesterol levels are very low -- you just don't get coronary heart disease.

But in any given population, there is a mixture of risk factors that are driving a disease. Cholesterol is right there near the top of the list, but so is smoking and diabetes and family history. So, it's really a constellation of risk factors that operate together to cause the disease.

It's almost impossible to pull any one of those risk factors and say that in any individual patient, that's the cause. But it's a major contributor in almost everybody with the disease. About two-thirds of patients that have heart attacks have elevated cholesterol levels.

Next: Why Are There So Many Cholesterol Numbers And What Do They Mean?

null

Previous: How Does Cholesterol Contribute To A Heart Attack?
-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 4222316. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 4222316. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 4222316.
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
Newborns at this hospital on Christmas Day get the special stockings as a keepsake.
Magee-Womens Hospital at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
PHOTO: Indian Christian devotees watch a fireworks display outside St. Peters Church in Allahabad on Dec. 24, 2014, on Christmas Eve.
Sanjay Kanojia/AFP/Getty Images
PHOTO: Anthony Lemons glances to family and friends at the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court
Marvin Fong/The Plain Dealer/AP Photo