July 12, 2010

Can You Tell if Someone Has High Cholesterol Without a Blood Test?

Posted in Heart disease tips tagged , , , , , , at 12:59 am by keepyourhearthealthy

by Salvatore Vuono

Yes, there can be physical signs of high cholesterol!  It does not occur in everyone but the appearance of small, yellow bumps/plaques on the eyelids could be a sign of high cholesterol.  The condition is called xanthelasma and it indicates abnormal cholesterol levels (high Trigylcerides, high LDL or low HDL) in 50% of patients with these eyelid bumps.  The bumps themselves are not harmful but the abnormal cholesterol levels put a patient at higher risk of heart attack and death.

If you suspect that you have xanthelasma, you should ask your primary doctor to check a cholesterol level right away.  Once the cholesterol issue has been addressed, the bumps of xanthelasma may also cause a cosmetic concern.  Dermatologists are not likely to remove these types of lesions.  However, a case study in the British Journal of Opthalmology in 2005 reported a man who had complete resolution of his xanthelasma after 10 years of cholesterol lowering drug treatment.  The patient was taking simvastatin (Zocor) to treat his high cholesterol and this proved to be a cure for the bothersome eyelid lesions.  You can see the pictures of this particular patient by clicking on the following link: Resolution of Xanthelasma.

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