Will an LDL 130 or higher & heart disease risk affect treatment?

By: Bobbie Hasselbring

I don't have coronary heart disease or diabetes. My LDL - known as bad cholesterol - is 130 mg/dL or higher. I have two or more other CHD risk factors of heart disease. And my doctor has told me that my risk for developing heart disease or having a heart attack within the next 10 years is between 10% and 20%.

Likely Treatment: Your risk for coronary heart disease is higher than for someone without other risk factors. Your doctor will likely recommend that you make changes to your lifestyle. These are called Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes, or TLC, in the May 2001 National Cholesterol Education Program guidelines. TLC includes getting more exercise and eating a healthy diet. You will need to follow a diet low in total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol. You will also need to lose weight if you are overweight. Your goal is to get your cholesterol to 130 mg/dL or lower. If you can do this with TLC alone, great! If not, your doctor may prescribe medicine to lower cholesterol levels.