The Nation's Health + [Heart disease reversal]

Heart disease reversal: Heart disease reversal at age 77

I met Agnes 18 months ago after she underwent a heart scan that revealed a scary score of over 1100. Although in her mid-70s, this was still a very high score. (Recall that a score this high carries a risk for heart attack and death of 25% per year.) Poor Agnes was a wreck over this unexpected result. "I can't sleep, I can't stop thinking about it!"

She'd undergone the scan because her 44-year old son had a heart scan score of 2200! Unfortunately, he ended up with a bypass operation for very severe disease.

Despite having been seeing a cardiologist in Boston for the last 8 years for a murmur, we uncovered multiple hidden lipoprotein patterns, many of which she shared with her son. Her most notable abnormalities were a low HDL and small LDL. Nearly 100% of all LDL particles were, in fact, small. This pattern also caused her LDL cholesterol to be underestimated by over 40%.

18 months on the Track Your Plaque program and Agnes came into town to get a repeat scan. Her score was 10.2% lower. She'd learned to live with the idea that she had hidden heart disease missed by her doctor and cardiologist for many years. But knowledge of the substantial reversal she'd achieved in the 18 months on the program gave Agnes tremendous peace of mind.

Agnes left the office with a big smile.