Superb Atherosclerosis 3d animated video (short)

This excellent 3.25 minute 3D medical animation beautifully illustratrates the mechanisms underlying our body's continual efforts to sustain and protect us. High blood pressure ladies and type 2 diabetics; pay special attention at .56 second mark on the video to see how surging high blood pressures tear away endothelial lining cells....this is very important to understand. Every point BP can be lowered, also helps your vessel lining structures retain their integrity and not rupture, dissect, tear off in chunks. All of us who have blocked arteries have hearts that have endured everything in the short portrayal. I marvel at how many different strategies our bodies deploy to protect us layer upon layer...until they pile too high. (Which is how we came to meet here : ) This particular animation is appealing because it correctly portrays how alive and fluid our body cells are...they are constantly in motion, moving around, going where they are called. Our arteries are not like PVC piping.....they are like thin cooked spaghetti. Cells don't have hard clam shells but more a jello like exterior which makes it easy for them to pass through one another and throughout the body.

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WOW!! This is fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks, Jaynie!

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Wow - that WAS good! Far more complex than I imagined.

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Thank you for this information! I have been taking my hypertension for granted.....I take my 6 medications for my high B/P on and off......always thought that hypertension was "no big deal". Seeing how the internal body works points out that high blood pressure isn't something to pass along as "no big deal". I also have high cholesterol and high triglycerides along with asthma. Perhaps I should start taking these "symptoms" a bit more seriously. Again, thanks for sharing your information with the rest of us.

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Dear J, I found this, which should be a good accompaniment to your video clip - Mary

Web MD
Cholesterol Management
Advanced Lipoprotein Testing

I originally posted on this topic 16 months ago after the untimely death of Tim Russert. Since that time, thousands of people have died from cardiovascular disease. It is the number one killer in the USA and approximately over 2600 people die each die from it each day.

Last week, the book that I co-authored with Tom Dayspring M.D. and William Cromwell M.D., two noted lipidologists, was published. It is titled Lipid and Lipoprotein Disorders: Current Clinical Solutions. I thought it was apropos to try and draw attention again to this most important topic.

Hyperlipidemia is the most modifiable risk factor leading to atherosclerosis, yet traditional lipid testing may miss up to 50% of people who have abnormal lipids. Prevention includes identifying people at risk and providing the best treatment individualized to their specific problem. Atherosclerosis results from a buildup of cholesterol-laden macrophages in the arterial intima. This occurs when atherogenic lipoprotein particles (principally low-density lipoprotein [LDL]) enter the arterial wall, become oxidized, and are subsequently ingested by macrophages.

It is with this background that I will discuss advanced lipoprotein testing and its role in identifying all patients at lipid related risk and as a tool for management of abnormal lipid levels. I often ask myself how is it that health-care providers do not understand this type of testing? I honestly believe that if all people are identified as being at risk, and then if treated appropriately, we would significantly change the face of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. As physicians, we are taught in medical school that it is all about total cholesterol, HDL-C, LDL-C, and triglycerides, yet few really understand the limitations of traditional lipid testing. I hear everyday physicians say that if it is so important how come everyone is not doing it? I believe the answer is that one does not want to change from old patterns of thinking, and according to other physicians, it is too much trouble to learn and understand.

Recently, the ADA/ACC released a Joint Concession Statement on lipoprotein management in patients with cardiometabolic risk (CMR). The full text is available on my website I believe it is mandatory reading. It states that patients with CMR in the moderately high, high, and very high risk groups, it is now the standard of care to quantitate lipoproteins by performing ApoB or LDL-P on all patients to ascertain risk and as a goal of therapy.

As many of us in healthcare know, since sterols are insoluble in the blood, they need to be driven around the body in lipoproteins. These include HDL-P, VLDL-P, and LDL-P among others. HDL particles are also known as ApoA and all the particles that cause atherosclerosis are known as ApoB. Although NCEP (National Cholesterol Education Panel) recommends calculating the non-HDL cholesterol, this value only can alert the physician that there may too many lipoprotein particles despite having a normal LDL-C. Approximately 90-95% of the circulating ApoB particles are LDL-P, which have a half-life of around 3 days. As varying amounts of triglycerides and cholesterol are driven around the body, in what I tell my patients are "cars", the ApoB particles enter the arterial wall if there are too many of the "cars" circulating in the bloodstream. By simple diffusion, all the bad particles flow from inside the artery and move into its wall and are "eaten" by macrophages, which become foam cells and are the hallmark of atherosclerosis.

In eight published studies of over 11,000 subjects, using LDL-P and other lipoprotein concentrations remained the most significant and independent predictor of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality over any other lipid parameter including the usual ratio that all physicians and patients talk about. In a nutshell, it is the number of LDL particles that matter most... it is the number of cars that cause a traffic jam not the people in the cars[TM]. For example, what if a person with moderate risk has met NCEP guidelines and has a LDL-C of 110mg/dl. How do I know that there are not 100 cars with one person driving or two big buses with 55 people? The answer is that I do not unless I measure LDL-P directly by using NMR or as a second option measuring ApoB with Gel Electrophoresis. Traditional testing measures the passengers and lipoprotein testing measures the cars, and it is the number of cars (LDL-P) measured by NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) that are the most numerous ApoB particles in the body and matter most in the development of atherosclerosis.

Although a comprehensive review of each of the methodologies to perform lipoprotein testing is beyond the scope of this blog post, I feel that measuring LDL particles directly using NMR is the best way to ascertain someone's true risk and then use that number as a guide to management. As I said in my posting about Alex Trebeck, the CDC states that 50% of people who have heart attacks have "normal" cholesterol. I hope you now understand why this can happen, having a normal LDL-C but high LDL-P, and be proactive and demand that your physician performs advanced lipoprotein testing.

[TM]-US Trademark No. 77/693074, The Center For Cholesterol Management

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