11 Responses

  1. kdroberts
    kdroberts February 17, 2011 at 6:55 am | | Reply

    One side of my family has all died from heart disease, hart attack or stroke so it’s something that is always on my mind. The stats about people not knowing they are at risk or what the risk factors are is quite scary.

    This is what the company I work for did this year. They also donated $5 to the American Heart Association for each person who wore red. 26 people in the office did.

  2. Sysy
    Sysy February 17, 2011 at 8:07 am | | Reply

    Why take a statin (which has proven dangerous side effects) if you don’t need one? Sounds like ridiculous advice and I don’t understand the recommendation.

    Those who are “unfortunate in their gene pool” still can do a lot via a healthy lifestyle and I hope they don’t feel they’re hard work doesn’t go in vain. Genes don’t account for 100% of the outcome of our health.

    Thanks for all the great heart health info, DiabetesMine, I’m bookmarking this.

  3. Sysy
    Sysy February 17, 2011 at 3:13 pm | | Reply

    So true, I’m crossing my fingers on that one!

  4. Natalie Sera
    Natalie Sera February 17, 2011 at 4:07 pm | | Reply

    I had a coronary artery spasm when I was 44. That means that my arteries weren’t clogged, but had just clamped down, and the result was like a heart attack. My father had his first heart attack before the age of 53, which is when he had his second, and the evidence of the first showed up on the EKG. He was thin as a rail, and non-diabetic, but his cholesterol was up in the 300′s (this was before cholesterol-lowering drugs), and I have inherited that tendency. And, of course, I have diabetes. So I have a triple-whammy for heart disease. I’m doing everything I can for it, and have a good cardiologist who has taken care of me for 19 years, and so far, so good, but I’m always aware of the risks. I DO take statins, because of my high risk, and have NO side-effects from them. You just have to do your best, and let nature take its course.

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  6. Heather
    Heather February 18, 2011 at 7:31 am | | Reply

    To Sysy’s comment on taking statins: Our 12 year old T1 son was prescribed a statin 6 months ago due to an LDL level of 119. After much discussion with other medical professionals and much time spent in consideration of the real risks we opted to revisit the idea of a statin in several years rather than expose a child to a dangerous medication with no real knowledge of the long term consequences. Our thinking was that increased risk of heart disease is not the same thing as having heart disease and the long term unknowns of giving statins to a growing child are not worth playing with. Our Endo was pretty pushy about it but we were increasingly convinced that our course was best for our son. So imagine our surprise when we learned that his LDL level is probably not really that high. It turns out that most cholesterol tests use a calculation to estimate your LDL levels because a separate test that really does measure LDL is time consuming and expensive. The Friedewald calculation says LDL = total cholesterol – HDL – (triglycerides/5). However the calculation is thrown off by high or low triglyceride levels. So if your triglycerides are below 40, as our son’s are, or above 400, you would need a specific LDL test to accurately measure your LDL. With that in mind I am stunned that statins are so frequently offered as a first line of defense against heart disease especially for children. Whether their known side effects concern you or not, they definitely have not been around long enough for long term results to be determined. So why wouldn’t every patient insist on an accurate testing of their LDL level before embarking on a dangerous drug? My guess is that, like my family, they have no idea their LDL hasn’t really been measured.

  7. Margo
    Margo February 18, 2011 at 6:58 pm | | Reply

    I have 2 sisters and a nephew with Type I diabetes. My oldest sister was 14 at diagnosis and lived in denial. She began smoking in her teens and smoked until she had a heart attack at 65. She was lucky to be alive that long, as she never managed her diabetes well at all. Her husband could hardly awaken her many mornings. She’s still alive, but can barely function and looks 40 years older than she is. I share this to help your readers understand the consequences of not caring for him or herself.

  8. Jane
    Jane March 10, 2011 at 12:08 pm | | Reply

    Five years ago, I had quadruple bypass surgery. I was 39 at the time. I have had T1 now for 34 years, and I can say with a great amount of certainty that I wouldn’t have needed such extreme treatment had I taken better care of my condition as a younger person. (I now wear a pump and CGM, but struggle keeping my A1C below 8%. I’ve just started the CGM, so I’m hoping for some good news on the AIC front in the next 3 to 6 months when I get it checked.) Although heart disease does run in my family (my brother passed away suddenly at 37 from heart failure, my father at 66), I’ve never had the addiction to cigarettes that they did. So whose to say? Me without diabetes, them without cigarettes – we’d all be here now sans chest scars and cigarette stained fingers. Anyway, since the surgery (five years) I’ve been on an ACE inhibitor, a statin, aspirin, and a beta blocker. My blood pressure and cholesterol (HDL, LDL, triglycerides) are well within acceptable range, my weight is steady at a BMI of 21. (I’m 5’6″, 140 lb) I keep regular appointments with my endo and cardiologist, but at my last cardio visit, I was told unless I was having any suspcious symptoms, he really didn’t need to see me again for another year.(!!!) So, my utterly uneducated conclusion is, something’s working.
    I think the concerns about the long term effects of the meds I’m taking are completely justified, especially if they are being taken by people younger than, say, 20-25. But since I didn’t start taking them until I was 39, I figure I’ve beat some pretty good odds just making it this far. (One doctor told me that the long term prognosis for a person with diabetes who’s had the surgery I did was 10 years. Combine that with the fact that I was told at the age of 10 that I would be lucky to make it to 40, and you can see why I’m tickled to still be here :)
    Just my two cents.

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