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Taking Lipitor Or Not
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BingC posted:
According to my cardiologist, I should start to take low dosage Lipitor (5 mg daily) to lower my LDL and soft plaques, hence reducing my cardiac risk factor by 25-30%.
However, knowing doctors receive incentives by Pfizer to push prescription of Lipitor, I wonder if I really need to take the medicine?
In addition, I already have some signs of memory loss. Lipitor will further reduce Cholesterol which is a vital ingredient for brain to maintain memory. Taking it may exacerbate my memory issue.

YOUR ADVICE IS HIGHLY APPRECIATED.





Medical Profile


o Pre-diabetic, A1C = 6.0 - 6.2 under diet control, no medication

o Blood Pressure: Average: (135 - 145)/(75 - 89)

o Calcium Plaque Score in Heart Arteries: 258 ( mild disease, narrowing possible)

o High Ferritin (533) (Normal range = 20 — 380 ng/mL) 12-13 years ago,
§ Went through phlebotomy for one year, and now normal

o Higher LDL (97 -116)

o I snore at night bothering my wife a lot.

o Cardiac Stress Test: Normal

o High Homocysteine (11.5 — 14.2) (Normal range < 11.4)

o High Cardio CRP (2.0) (Normal range < 0.6 mg/L)

o Having A-Fib (irregularity) in 2001, No re-occurrence so far.

o Polyps in Colon, Father had same and LL died from colon cancer.
§ Have checked in a 3-year cycle, results normal

o My mother died from breast cancer and she had diabetes.

o My H-Pylori count is on the high side, but no action from doctor.

o Allergic to tree pollens, grass, fruits, dust, mold and other food items.
§ Taking allergy shots for life.

Life Style

· Low carb diet
· Still eat some salty and junk food items, e.g. chips, ice cream, fast food, pizza, etc.
· Tried to be active: Ping Pong 3- 4 times per week; ballroom dance every week.
· Keeping body weight around 151 - 155 lbs (6 ft.)
· Taking baby Aspirin daily, plus: garlic pill, fish oil, Saw Palmetto, Century Silver Vitamin, cinnamon power.

Reply
 
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cardiostarusa1 responded:
Hi:

"I wonder if I really need to take the medicine?"

In general-only here, statins, such a Lipitor, are good for some individuals, bad (side effects/adverse reactions, such as memory loss, muscle aches/pains) for others. On an individualized case-by-case basis, the benefits of taking a statin must clearly outweigh the risks.

On the positive side, statins may/can stabilize vulnerable plaque (VP).

VP hides well-away within the vessel wall (essentially a 0% blockage, but still unequivocal atherosclerosis), can't even be seen with invasive X-ray angiography, causes no advance warning signs/symptoms, and is now recognized worldwide as the cause of the majority of heart attacks by way of plaque rupture causing a blood clot (thrombus).

Statins also have anti-inflammatory properties and as applicable to the patient, thus lowers C-reactive protein (CRP/hs-CRP). Inflammation is recognized as a major player in the development and progression of atherosclerosis.

Additionally, as reported, a risk factor merely increases the probability that one will develop cardiovascular disease, BUT doesn't 100% guarantee that one will develop it, nor does its absence (or even the absence of ALL known risk factors) 100% guarantee that one won't have a heart attack or brain attack.

Also, it is said that medicine is a science of uncertainty and an act of probability, and for many, prescription drug-therapy is a hit or miss, trial and error affair.

Side effects/adverse reactions can not be predicted or pre-determined. If/when side effects occur, this may/can diminish or disappear as the body adjusts itself to the drug, though sometimes, one will simply not be able to tolerate a certain drug (or drugs) at all, at any dose.

Factors and conditions such as age height, weight, gender, genetics and metabolism may/can come into play in determining who experiences side effects and who does not.

Pharmacogenomics, the study of the interplay between genes and drugs, helps to explain why prescription drugs have different effects in different individuals. Genetic variation in one or more genes may be the basis for a therapeutic failure or for an adverse drug reaction.

Without lowering the dosage (unless applicable), sometimes, taking a particular prescription drug at a different time of the day or taking it with food may/can improve the side effect-related situation.

Sometimes, changing to another same-class drug or taking a lower dose of the drug along with another class of drug (for a combo-action) may/can impove the side effect-related situation.

Keep ALL known modifiable risk factors for cardiovascular disease (which actually begins very early in life, even as early as in the pre-teen/teenage years) closely in-check.

Best of luck down the road of life.

Take care,

CardioStar*

WebMD member (since 8/99)

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