More than 93 million American adults today have high cholesterol, which puts them at risk for heart disease, heart attack, stroke, or premature death. At Cardia Vision, LLC. in Bellevue, Washington, experienced board-certified radiologist Kimberly Brockenbrough, MD, helps men and women with high cholesterol take the preventive steps necessary to protect their heart health and whole-body wellness. Cardia Vision is the only facility to offer preventive cardiology imaging in the Seattle area. Click the online scheduler or call the office to book an appointment.
Cholesterol is a waxy material that occurs naturally within your body. Some cholesterol is good, as you need it to produce vitamin D, digestive enzymes, and hormones. Your body produces all the cholesterol required for healthy function.
In rare cases, your body may make more cholesterol than you need. Cholesterol also comes from outside sources. Common sources of extra cholesterol include foods from animal sources, such as dairy products and meat.
If you eat too much cholesterol-containing food, that excess cholesterol merges with other substances within your blood to create plaque. The plaque clings to your blood vessel walls, leading to buildup called atherosclerosis.
When you have atherosclerosis, it can cause coronary artery narrowing or even blockage. This puts you at high risk of heart attack, stroke, and sudden death if untreated.
There are three categories of cholesterol. All of the following are lipoproteins, a blend of fat and protein.
LDL, known as “bad” cholesterol, is the cholesterol that leads to atherosclerosis.
HDL, or “good” cholesterol, works to remove LDL from your body.
VLDL contributes to, but isn’t the main cause of, atherosclerosis. While LDL primarily transports cholesterol in your blood, VLDL mainly moves triglycerides.
Your cholesterol reading combines these figures to give you a total cholesterol number.
You can inherit high cholesterol. Two inherited cholesterol disorders include:
Familial hyperlipidemia is an inherited condition in which you have excess lipids, like cholesterol and triglycerides, in your blood.
Familial hypercholesterolemia is an inherited disorder in which your LDL cholesterol levels are too high.
Conditions such as diabetes can worsen inherited high cholesterol. If you have an inherited high cholesterol condition, it’s particularly important to monitor your heart health and follow heart healthy guidelines.
Because you’re at high risk for heart disease, heart attack, stroke, and even sudden death when you have high cholesterol, cardiology imaging is important.
Cardia Vision , LLC. performs preventive cardiology screenings, during which Dr. Brockenbrough examines blood vessels in your heart. Through this exam, she can diagnose atherosclerosis, blood vessel narrowing, and blood vessel blockages.
Your Cardia Vision Scan includes a coronary CT angiogram and a calcium score.
Using this information, Dr. Brockenbrough can help you manage your high cholesterol and heart disease risk through positive lifestyle changes, including eating a healthy diet and maintaining a healthy weight.
A Cardia Vision Scan can help you identify heart disease long before you have a crisis like a heart attack. Call the office or book your appointment online.