Side effects of high cholesterol - What’s the big deal?
There are numerous negative effects of high cholesterol in humans, which may have a great impact on patient’s life. That’s why they must be pointed out.
As you may probably know, there exist several fractions of cholesterol in the body. However, the two most important are: LDL - Low-density Lipoproteins and HDL - high-density Lipoproteins.
LDL is called “bad cholesterol” because the excess amounts of it increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes. On the other hand, HDL is called “good cholesterol” because it reduces the risk of the mentioned complications.
Speaking of high cholesterol, it is generally meant increased amount of the bad cholesterol. The general causes of increased bad cholesterol are:
1. Decreased physical movement
2. Dietary- eating fatty foods
3. Hereditary conditions
4. Weight and Age
These factors are to keep in mind because, if you change your attitude towards them, you may fight or prevent high cholesterol problems.
The increased amount of cholesterol is a factor, which contributes further to the development of atheromatous plaque . That’s how cardiovascular diseases are developed.
These plaques develop in the wall of the artery. They grow and grow and that’s how they reduce the blood flow to a specific organ.
In most cases they reduce the blood flow towards the heart, which means that the heart will get less blood. Some of the complications of unruptured (plaque, which is not ruptured) plaque are:
1. Angina Pectoris - in the heart. This disease manifests with a strong pain on the chest. It last shortly and it is well controlled with nitroglycerin. This is one of the most common high cholesterol side effects.
2. Transient Ischemic Attacks, called TIAs. The reduced blood flow could lead to development of necrosis in the brain. This necrosis is due to the ischemic periods, when the brain is getting less blood then it is supposed to get.
3. The plaque could develop in the blood vessels, supplying with blood the legs. Patients could lose sensitivity there. Amputation might be required to save patient’s life, if the case is not revealed by the doctor.
When the plaque rupture, there come many other different problems, which, sometimes, are life-treating. When the plaque ruptures there are several possible events to happen:
1. The ruptured part, called thrombus goes to the brain. In this situation, a major blood vessel is obliterated and a huge space of the brain is superfloused from blood.
Necrosis develops and this could lead to death. This is potentially lethal side effects of high cholesterol.
2. If the thrombus goes to the heart, then the patient develops heart attack. If the patient survives to it, he/she will have the heart pumping function reduced because some of the muscle cells, operating there would be dead.
3. Other organs could be affected, too. They are: kidneys, intestinal vessels (mesenterial thrombosis).
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