If you're not on medicine to lower your cholesterol yet, you might be soon.Not on cholesterol meds? New guidelines may change that - CNN.com
In what's being called a tectonic shift in the way doctors will treat high cholesterol, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology on Tuesday released new treatment guidelines calling for a focus on risk factors rather than just cholesterol levels.
The new guidelines could double the amount of people on medication to lower their cholesterol, experts say.
- Do you have heart disease?
- Do you have diabetes (Type 1 or 2)?
- Do you have a bad cholesterol level more than 190?
- Is your 10-year risk of a heart attack greater than 7.5%?
So how do you and your doctor determine if your 10-year risk of a heart attack is above 7.5% and you should be put on a statin?
A simple calculation, said Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones, chairman of the committee that developed the equation.
"We were able to generate very robust risk equations for both non-Hispanic white men and women as well as African-American men and women," Lloyd-Jones said. "Those equations factor in age, sex, race, total and HDL ('good') cholesterol levels, blood pressure levels, blood pressure treatment status as well as diabetes and current smoking status."