High Calcium Score and PCSK9

Posted by lolagrey @lolagrey, May 19, 2018

My CAC score is 408. I exercise, eat healthy and take appropriate supplements for heart health. I do have a history of high cholesterol and high LDL. My endo and primary want me to take PCSK9 shots as I suffer from hair and memory loss and lethargy when taking statins. They feel the highLDL is FH…familial aster is a history of 2 younger brothers with early heart attacks. I am 65. Any pros or cons on the PCSK9? I am hesitant.

Liked by carnes

Lolagrey, I wouldn't hesitate to try the PCSK9 injections. You can't take statins so you should try any alternative your MD suggests. The injections of Praluent have worked quite well for me, actually better than statins (which I couldn't tolerate) as far as bringing down overall cholesterol and LDL numbers. I have had no side effects but even if you do have a side effect, the medication is a dose of once every two weeks so you should know pretty soon if you can tolerate it. Doing the injections is easy. Minor discomfort.

NYArtist asked if a person has had another calcium scan. There is radiation involved in getting this scan and it is very imprecise as to specific areas and degree of blockage. I suggest talking to your cardiologist for guidance on this. I suspect there are other more precise tests with perhaps no radiation or with radiation but the testing is more precise. When I was first diagnosed, my cardiologist indicated "it always gets worse" so we are all doing our best to slow down the worsening of our clogged arteries.

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@lolly906

Thank you everyone for all the great advice and support! I have not started the Lipitor yet, (due to anxiety over it) but feel more comfortable now with all of your advice, I'm going to take a lower dose at first along with the baby aspirin to see how I tolerate it I'm so grateful I joined this discussion group you have all been so helpful I wish you all the best and will keep you posted! Also read something about "repatha"? Is anyone familiar with it?

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keith156, I think your cardiologist hopes to get your LDL down and your HDL up but getting your LDL down to 20 will be a monumental improvement and just might bring down your calcium score or at least keep it from increasing. Some people are on both a statin and a PCSK9 inhibitor injection. I wish you good luck.

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@lolly906

Thank you everyone for all the great advice and support! I have not started the Lipitor yet, (due to anxiety over it) but feel more comfortable now with all of your advice, I'm going to take a lower dose at first along with the baby aspirin to see how I tolerate it I'm so grateful I joined this discussion group you have all been so helpful I wish you all the best and will keep you posted! Also read something about "repatha"? Is anyone familiar with it?

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A recent Q&A online by Mayo cardiologists addressed repeat calcium tests. Maybe a moderator can find a link to a recording of it. I recall them saying there is no value to repeating. It is the unstable plaque that we treat and the calcium test measures stable, or calcified plaque. The goal of the drugs we take is to stabilize the bad stuff moving through our arteries so the calcification can actually increase as that happens, or at least that is my understanding.

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@lolly906

Thank you everyone for all the great advice and support! I have not started the Lipitor yet, (due to anxiety over it) but feel more comfortable now with all of your advice, I'm going to take a lower dose at first along with the baby aspirin to see how I tolerate it I'm so grateful I joined this discussion group you have all been so helpful I wish you all the best and will keep you posted! Also read something about "repatha"? Is anyone familiar with it?

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@jharsh Thanks for the tip about a recent Video Q&A with Mayo Clinic cardiologists. Here is the link to all the past video events:
– Expert Q&As https://connect.mayoclinic.org/webinars/

I'm not sure which one might have talked specifically about calcium tests. Might it be one of these recent ones?
– Video Q&A about Men's Heart Health https://connect.mayoclinic.org/webinar/video-qs-heart-health/
– Video Q&A about Women and Heart Disease https://connect.mayoclinic.org/webinar/video-qa-about-women-and-heart-disease/
– Video Q&A about Stroke https://connect.mayoclinic.org/webinar/video-qa-about-stroke-1/

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@lolly906

Thank you everyone for all the great advice and support! I have not started the Lipitor yet, (due to anxiety over it) but feel more comfortable now with all of your advice, I'm going to take a lower dose at first along with the baby aspirin to see how I tolerate it I'm so grateful I joined this discussion group you have all been so helpful I wish you all the best and will keep you posted! Also read something about "repatha"? Is anyone familiar with it?

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Yes! Thank you getting thisnarrowed down . It's https://connect.mayoclinic.org/webinar/video-qs-heart-health/ specifically at 23:00 minutes begins discussion about calcium testing then specifically about retesting is at 26:20 into the video.

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Hello- I am new on here and I need some help. I have a lot of problems with statin drugs. My cholesterol is way too high and my my heart doctor is thinking about a shot. Since I have had cancer (four lung cancers) he is hesitant about prescribing it to me because it will lower my immune system even more than it is. Do any of you receive these shots? Can you tell me about your experience? Thank you

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Hi @merpreb,

I moved your message and combined it with this discussion so that you can meet other members who have discussed different types of treatments to lower cholesterol.
If you click on VIEW & REPLY in your email notification, you will see the whole discussion and can join in, meet, and participate with other members talking about their or their loved ones' experiences.

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@kanaazpereira

Hi @merpreb,

I moved your message and combined it with this discussion so that you can meet other members who have discussed different types of treatments to lower cholesterol.
If you click on VIEW & REPLY in your email notification, you will see the whole discussion and can join in, meet, and participate with other members talking about their or their loved ones' experiences.

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@kanaazpereira _ Thank you. This was an early 2018 (I think) message. I have no idea why it says that I just sent this. I didn't. I have now found a new drug that I am tolerating- Livalo. I'll see in a couple of months how it does. My cardiologist says that I am not showing or experiencing any side effects, so we are just going to wait and see. It's genetic, definitely not diet. Thank you.

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@lolly906

I just had a high calcium score of 224, and my LDL is high, heart disease is in my family, but I'm concerned about taking the Lipitor my Dr wants me to take I've heard so many side effects of the statins. I'm on low dose aspirin now to any suggestions would be greatly appreciated very nervous about all this

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I could not tolerate statins. For the last six months I have been injecting Repatha twice a month. Recent bloodwork shows my LDL has dropped 50%.

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Have been on repatha for six months. My HDL has dropped by 50%. (Unable to tolerate statins). Interested to hear from others on this medication. Side effects?

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