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  • Advice about statins

    I suspect my endocrinologist will want to put me on statins.

    My cholesterol test 4 months ago was not great. HDL was low, LDL was high. I don't have the exact numbers in front of me, but my trigs were 81....I remember that.
    Don't remember C-peptide levels, but I believe they were within the normal range.
    It was not an expanded cholesterol panel, so I don't know LDL-p level at all.

    I got another blood test last week, but since I've only been Primal for 6 weeks I don't have much hope for big improvements. The best I'm hoping for at this stage is that my HDL has gone up.
    So I believe he will want me to start taking statins because he talked about it at my appointment. I did get him to agree that he was willing to experiment with taking me off them if I lost some weight, so at least there's hope of going off them but what I wonder is should I even take them at all?
    On one hand thought that I'm building plaques in my arteries scares me, but I also know that the evidence statins are helpful for women is poor.
    I kind of figure I'll have to take them for a little, but hopefully I can lose some weight by my next appointment (in 6 months) and he'll agree it's okay to try without them.

    I'm 26, female, have PCOS with mild IR.

  • #2
    I would talk to him about your WOE and see if he will agree to let you go 6 more months. I also printed of Griffs cholesterol primer and gave it to my doctor. She wasn't to thrilled with the idea but she just gave me the speil about the risks and wanted to see me again in 4 months. The link to the primer is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread4723.html. I hope this helps. The decision is yours, it's nice if your doctor agrees but in the end it is your decision to treat your body how you wanted to take care of it. No matter what you decide.

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    • #3
      Find and post your lipid numbers.

      However if they are not completely horrible (which would indicate genetic problems of the familial hypercholesterolaemia kind) there's absolutely no good reason for a 26-year-old woman to take statins.

      There's zero (even the mainstream medicine agrees, ZERO) evidence that statins help with primary prevention in women (primary prevention: avoiding cardiovascular disease, secondary: avoiding things like heart attacks when you have already been diagnosed with CVD). There's some evidence and much argument about it for statins helping with primary prevention in men -- but statins are completely useless (worse than useless, actually) for women without CVD.

      And why does your endocrinologist (and not a cardiologist) want to prescribe you statins?

      In your particular case I would follow Nancy Reagan's approach: Just Say No. You do understand that you *can* say "no" to you doctor, right?
      Last edited by Lumifer; 04-01-2013, 10:55 AM.

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      • #4
        Well he might be open to it.
        I told him I was doing low carb, though I didn't specify Primal. He said that was fine, although he also recommended Alli.
        I refrained from responding "screw that, I'm not wasting my money on anal leakage pills!" but only barely.

        Oh well, at least he didn't mention Lap-Band.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Lumifer View Post

          And why does your endocrinologist (and not a cardiologist) want to prescribe you statins?
          I see an endocrinologist because I have PCOS. He gives me regular blood tests for hormones and other blood markers: estrogen, testosterone, TSH, FSH, LH, blood sugar, A1c, c-peptide, HDL, LDL, and Trigs. Also liver enzymes because I take Metformin.
          I've never seen a cardiologist because I've never had any heart problems.

          Once the results from my recent test come in, I'll post them.
          Last edited by s-piper; 04-01-2013, 11:00 AM.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by s-piper View Post
            I see an endocrinologist because I have PCOS. He gives me regular blood tests for hormones and other blood markers: estrogen, testosterone, TSH, FSH, LH, blood sugar, A1c, c-peptide, HDL, LDL, and Trigs. Also liver enzymes because I take Metformin.
            I've never seen a cardiologist because I've never had any heart problems.
            I just wonder why is that a specialist who's not a cardiologist feels the need to prescribe useless drugs for potential cardiovascular issues. That's far outside of his area of expertise.

            If he's really concerned about your blood lipids, he should refer you to a cardiologist, not go "Here are some expensive miracle pills that you'll have to take for the rest of your life, I heard they're useful..."
            Last edited by Lumifer; 04-01-2013, 11:02 AM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by s-piper View Post
              I've never seen a cardiologist because I've never had any heart problems.
              There is no advantage to taking statins for a person in your position, but the risks are very real.

              HEALTHY DIETS AND SCIENCE

              Also go to the Weston A Price site and read about how "healthy" cholesterol numbers were changed in a back room deal to make it look like almost everybody in the country should be on these drugs forever.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                I just wonder why is that a specialist who's not a cardiologist feels the need to prescribe useless drugs for potential cardiovascular issues. That's far outside of his area of expertise.
                All doctors are experts on everything. Didn't you know that? :P

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                  I just wonder why is that a specialist who's not a cardiologist feels the need to prescribe useless drugs for potential cardiovascular issues. That's far outside of his area of expertise.
                  Same reason a GP would, I guess.
                  He might also feel it's not totally outside this area of expertise because cardiovascular disease does correlate with IR.

                  Anyway, even if I did go to a cardiologist for a second opinion, what are the chances he/she would recommend something different? Not good would be my guess, and they'd probably be horrified by Primal.
                  I don't need someone telling me to take statins AND eat a low-fat diet with lots of 'heart healthy whole grains'

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                  • #10
                    You don't need to get buy-in from a doctor. Lots of people just ignore the prescription. And they don't tell the whole truth about their diet. ("I eat lots of whole, natural foods...")

                    It is not good medical practice for a woman in your position to be prescribed statins.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by s-piper View Post
                      Same reason a GP would, I guess.
                      He might also feel it's not totally outside this area of expertise because cardiovascular disease does correlate with IR.
                      Yes, GPs tend to have an entirely reflexive knee-jerk of the "Your LDL is greater than zero? STATINS!" kind. But even then, prescribing statins to a mid-20s women is unusual, I'd say.

                      As to what he might feel, that feeling is wrong. He is NOT a specialist in everything that might be correlated with hormonal shifts (which is pretty much every disease).

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
                        You don't need to get buy-in from a doctor. Lots of people just ignore the prescription. And they don't tell the whole truth about their diet. ("I eat lots of whole, natural foods...")
                        That'd be an interesting experiment. Go to a new doctor and describe my diet this way: "I eat lots of green vegetables including seaweed like nori and kelp noodles, carrots, other root vegetables, and avacado. For protein, I eat grass-fed meat when I can afford it, chicken, fish and eggs. I also eat mushrooms, berries, and seasonal fruit. I do eat cheese and nuts by I try not to over do it. I avoid sugar, processed foods, corn oil and soybean oil."

                        I wonder if they'd say that sounded so bad, or even pick up on the lack of grain and legumes?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                          Yes, GPs tend to have an entirely reflexive knee-jerk of the "Your LDL is greater than zero? STATINS!" kind. But even then, prescribing statins to a mid-20s women is unusual, I'd say.
                          Unless she's a fat-ass with high LDL.

                          Oh well, hopefully Primal with change one, if not both, of those things. I have lost some weight already. Most of it was in my pants size, but not on the scale though so the difference between now and 4 months ago was only about 5 lbs.
                          At least I know it happened, and weightloss you feel in your clothes is a better indicator than the scale anyway.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by s-piper View Post
                            Unless she's a fat-ass with high LDL.
                            Not even then.

                            In your place I'd worry about diabetes more than about CVD and statins are singularly unhelpful here (see e.g. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/05/op...sers.html?_r=1). Besides, let me repeat, statins have shown ZERO usefulness for women without CVD, and yes, that includes fat asses and high LDL.
                            Last edited by Lumifer; 04-01-2013, 12:22 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Lumifer View Post
                              Not even then.

                              In your place I'd worry about diabetes more than about CVD and statins are singularly unhelpful here. Besides, let me repeat, statins have shown ZERO usefulness for women without CVD, and yes, that includes fat asses and high LDL.
                              If only more doctors felt that way.

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